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Hay Profits

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Soggy Bottom

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Looking for some input on if my numbers I am figuring on baling 100 acres of clean coastal are way off. This would be a new business venture in the future. The sheet includes buying equipment with a 30k yearly note and putting in an irrigation system. Something like a K pod system. My initial buy-in would be a 200k investment. My numbers seem high on the profits side but not sure what else I need to figure in for overhead and expenses. I have attached a sheet I started. Thanks for the input.
 

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ccr

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Looks like would have to be good ground and plenty of water for 4 cuttings a year, and didn't notice cost or rent of the 100 acres in your post or spreadsheet.

What is the water source?

What is the sale price per bale that you are figuring on (gross income per cutting $50,909/400 bales = $127)?
 
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kenny thomas

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Looks like would have to be good ground and plenty of water for 4 cuttings a year, and didn't notice cost or rent of the 100 acres in your post or spreadsheet.

What is the water source?

What is the sale price per bale that you are figuring on (gross income per cutting $50,909/400 bales = $127)?
It says 29090 total square bales. $7 per bale
 

ccr

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I missed the very first line of the spreadsheet says square bales, I was thinking round bales.
 

Brute 23

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Out of curiosity what equipment is factored in?

I'm not a big hay person but would a barn be necessary for storage until it sells?
 

callmefence

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I would be very interested in seeing your equipment list as well. That many small squares requires a lot of equipment to get up ,store and haul.

I've got a Kline system. I would dang sure hate to try to water 100 acres with one. Not saying you couldn't, just saying..
 
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Soggy Bottom

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I attached an equipment list I put together. This land is owned free and clear with hay storage on it. My numbers defiantly are not perfect just trying to see what 100 acres will make someone on an average year. I know guys in this area that irrigate and cut 4 sometimes 5 cuttings a year. Seems to me if you have enough acreage to justify the equipment cost there is decent money to be made. Like anything its a gamble and alot of work with no guarantees. I also know that good coastal bales sell regularly for $8 a bale sometimes high as $10. Thanks for the input.
 

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callmefence

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Thanks for that. Seems reasonable. I think your probably being a little optimistic on yield. You may get that some years. Is the grass already there?? If it is I would go forward with haying it. Way more money in hay than cattle. And the more land gets fragmented the more demand for hay. I would sure look hard at that irrigation plan.
 

M.Magis

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Do you have an outlet to sell 30,000 square bales at full "retail"? I'm sure the hay market there is different from the midwest, prices here are half that.
 

Brute 23

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Probably need to figure on some additional help here and there and then add 10 or 15% just cause there is always some thing else some where.

I would be tempted to pay some one to cut 25 or 50ac and make sure you can move it timely and at the price you want. Even if you break even you get to test run your plan before making a large investment and start marketing your operation. I'm assuming most of your market will be horse people so you have to want to deal with that also.
 

1982vett

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Yeah. Nothing for labor has been allocated. I’m guessing you have a plan for that. You listed a trailer, but what about the truck to pull it with, deliver the hay to customers. Run after parts, supplies, and stuff. I imagine it’s going to stay busy by someone or two. What about property taxes?

The K Pod system....well it’s cute....but 100 acres?

still, if you can pocket $1 a bale that’s not bad for 6 months work.

might think about adding a round baler. Would be handy in the event you might want to beat a rainstorm or if it does get wet. Cow hay is easier sold in rounds. You can always unroll and square bale the rounds for horse hay...
 
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Stocker Steve

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A few guys make money on cow hay here by running old equipment on cheap stumpage. Need to be a likable mechanic to make this work.
A few guys make money on dairy alfalfa hay here by selling for a premium. Need to have the ability to wrap if the weather is against you.
A few guys here make money on small square horse hay here. Need to work with crazy people to make this work.

Most guys have too much equipment cost per ton and not enough fertility to make a profit on hay.
 

Djm961

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Does the sheet take into consideration all of the depreciation? Also think you need consider adding cost of taxes/ insurance for the land if not renting. Labor is also missing but with that many bales its going to take some outside labor force. Also agree with above on being able to sell all at full retail price. Around my parts no matter what you do some of the hay is going to be rained on throughout the year.
 
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Soggy Bottom

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I updated my sheet showing labor for myself and part-time help during hay season. I lowered the tonnage per acre some. Seems these numbers represent what I have read. Thanks
 

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Dave

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How much does your power cost? I know a guy here who has two pivots covering 100 acres. He gets 2 cuttings. His power bill is over $6,000 a year. And with all the hydra power the PNW has cheap electricity. Do you have 3 phase power? You need to move a lot of water to irrigate 100 acres. It will take a big hp pump to move that much water.

Those K-line systems work good in a pasture but in a hay field every time you move it you are dragging over the grass knocking it down. And how many K-lines you figure to use? I know a guy who uses them. He has 2 for 30 acres.
 

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