Extension News

Learn the Economics of Farm Equipment and Labor Sharing

10/29/2007

AMES, Iowa -- Rapidly rising machinery costs and the shortage of skilled labor are affecting some farming operations in the Midwest. Some producers are sharing these resources to reduce costs and increase efficiency. However, a number of factors need to be considered before entering sharing arrangements.

To help producers evaluate such arrangements, Iowa State University (ISU) Extension and University of Missouri Extension economists have developed the Machinery and Labor Sharing Arrangements Workshop. It will be offered in Algona, Iowa on Nov. 27.

William Edwards, ISU Extension economist, coordinates the annual Farm Machinery Custom Rate survey. “Feedback from our custom rate survey indicates that many producers are concerned about the significant rise in machinery costs and are looking for strategies to deal with this ever increasing challenge,” said Edwards. “Producers who want to use their resources more efficiently can gain a greater understanding of the benefits and challenges of co-owning equipment and sharing labor by participating in these workshops.”

The workshop will address:

• Benefits and drawbacks of sharing equipment and labor
• Organizational issues associated with equipment and labor sharing
• Planning for sharing resources
• Available resources for implementing sharing arrangements

More information about the program can be found online at www.machinerysharing.info.

The workshop will be held at the Farm Bureau Office, 418 Highway 18 W, Algona, Iowa. To register, please contact Bob Behnkendorf, ISU Extension, at (515) 295-2469, or bbehnk@iastate.edu.

This program is sponsored by ISU Extension, the North Central Risk Management Education Center and the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture. The Iowa Farm Bureau Federation and Grundy National Bank are program collaborators.

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Contacts :

Darren Jarboe, Center for Crop Utilization Research, (515) 294-2342, jarboe@iastate.edu

Bob Behnkendorf, Kossuth County Extension, (515) 295-2469, bbehnk@iastate.edu.

William Edwards , Economics, (515) 294-6161, wedwards@iastate.edu

Jean McGuire , Extension Communications and Marketing, (515) 294-7033, jmcguire@iastate.edu