Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Conventional bale contractor fees  (Read 4131 times)


  • Joined Jul 2011
  • County Durham
Conventional bale contractor fees
« on: September 11, 2012, 02:55:07 pm »

I sold some hay to a local lady some time back as she feared her field wouldn't get cut. On Sunday at lunch time she called in a panic. A contractor did cut her field and had turned it twice and it was dry and ready for baling but the contractors baler had apparently broken and rain was forecast. So I did the neighbourly thing, rowed it up, baled it, stacked it and helped load the horse box. The field was a little over an acre and she got 117 bales. She said she would pay the going rate but neither of us know what it is. I don't what to to over charge (she said she would find out what her contractor was going to charge). By the time I drove there with the acrobat turned it then returned with the baler and baled it I was out of the house about 4 hours. I was thinking around 75p per bale would be about right. Any thoughts?

Thanks Richard
« Last Edit: September 12, 2012, 08:33:32 pm by arborexplora »

robert waddell

  • Guest
Re: Conventional bale contractor fees
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2012, 03:01:28 pm »
they used to publish in the farmers weekly a contractors guide price for all services to agriculture
but i think at your price there will a Que forming to get your services :farmer:


  • Joined Aug 2010
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: Conventional bale contractor fees
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2012, 03:07:27 pm »
Apparently the average cost (not charge for, actual cost) of doing a small bale incl all the fuel, baler twine, depreciation etc is about 1.50 a bale. So if you subtract the proportion of the process which the contractor did it will give you a rough guide. If you are turning and baling I wouldnt think the cost (let alone profit) would be less than 1 esp as you helped load it as well. Any profit (if you wanted to charge any) would be on top of that.
As a comparison the bare cost (again not incl profit) of doing a big bale is around 2-3 (more cost efficient and using net wrap not baler twines). Again not incl profit and probably not too much contrib to depreciation of the machinery there.
Hope this helps!


  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: Conventional bale contractor fees
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2012, 12:35:30 am »
As you did it as a neighbourly thing and don't plan to make a living out of doing it, I guess you don't necessarily want to charge commercial rates, just enough to not be taken for granted / a mug?

For odd jobs, our contractor charges 18/hour plus fuel (he fills up with our diesel on leaving.)

Or, if she is agreeable and it would be useful to you, you could take a 'cut' of the crop, say 30 bales (1/4.)

But I doubt if she'd have a problem with 1/bale if you want to charge her that much.

Personally, this year, I'd take the hay if I could, otherwise maybe ask for a round 100.
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing


  • Joined Jul 2011
  • County Durham
Re: Conventional bale contractor fees
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2012, 07:52:01 am »
Hi thanks for the replies.

We have agreed on a price which I am happy with. It is less than many of you indicated but more than her contractor said he would charge. He quoted 5 an acre to row up and 43p per bale, bringing it to around 55.

43p per bale seemed a little too cheap especially considering the acreage, it might be more appropriate when baling 10+ acres.

Castle Farm

  • Joined Nov 2008
  • Hereford/Powys Border. near Hay-on-Wye
    • castlefarmeggs
Re: Conventional bale contractor fees
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2012, 05:08:49 pm »
It's a 1 a bale around here and you turn it yourself.
Traditional Utility Breed Hatching Eggs sent next day delivery. Pure bred Llyen Sheep.


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