UMass Extension Vegetable Program

Crop Production Budgets

Below are "Process Budgets" for various crops grown in Massachusetts. A Process Budget is a description of the production practices followed in growing a crop, the resources required, and the costs involved. They are typically expressed on a per acre basis.  The dollar amounts in these budgets are outdated and for reference only. The spreadsheet format allows you to  use these sheets with your own numbers to quickly calculate a production budget and estimate net revenue for a wide variety of crops.

Each Process Budget describes only one of several such budgets that can be developed for a particular crop. Just as there are several alternative sets of production practices and equipment complements that can be used to grow the crop, there are correspondingly different process budgets.

Process Budgets provide a valuable framework and analytical process that individual growers may use for analysis of input requirements and production costs on their farms. It has additional usefulness since, once a "base" process budget has been developed, it can serve as a benchmark for assessing differences in input costs and returns associated with other production systems and equipment complements.

The production system and inputs required for these Process Budgets were developed by an "Expert Panel". The Panel was composed of a number of growers and Extension System vegetable specialists. This information was then assembled in the attached format by Robert L. Christensen with additional assistance from John Howell and Frank Mangan of the University of Massachusetts, and Mike Sciabarrasi and Otho Wells of the University of New Hampshire.

Each Process Budget is organized as follows:

Table 1. A description of the crop production operations, generally in the sequence in which they are performed during the growing season. Included is the identification of equipment units used, frequency of the activity, and machine and labor hours required.

Table 2. A summary of the labor required for each crop operation, skill level involved, wage rate, and labor cost per acre.

Table 3. A listing of cash expenses other than labor and equipment. Each expense item is identified along with units required, price per unit and total cost per acre.

Table 4. An estimation of machine operating and ownership costs involved in growing and harvesting the crop expressed on a per acre basis.

Table 5. A summary of the costs estimated in Tables 2, 3, and 4. It should be noted that charges for the use of land, for management inputs (other than labor), marketing, taxes, and other non-production related costs are not included.

Table 6. A presentation of anticipated wholesale gross revenues as yield and price are varied.

Table 7. Returns, net of the costs considered in the budget.

These production budgets are based on wholesale prices. They include costs for containers, but not for trucking (which vary depending on distances), or sales commissions (which do not apply in many situations). For retail marketing, shipping containers will not be needed, but various retail costs such as sales labor, transportation if a farmers' market is used, insurance, advertising, and roadside stand costs such as utilities will need to be addressed.

To download the spreadsheet file for customizing or editing click on the link below.