Farmdesk logo
Share this article on Linkedin

Update standard cultivation costs 2022-2023

Jef Aernouts

The crop costs in 2022 are significantly higher than those in 2021, think for example of the price increase of labor or fertilizer. In Farmdesk we have therefore adjusted the standard cost prices. Below is a brief overview per cost item.

The updates are based on a survey, inquiries with contract workers and own insights.


The establishment cost includes the seed and all (contract) work for seedbed preparation (plowing, harrowing...) and the sowing itself.

In Farmdesk, we increased the total planting cost by 10% (~50% of the cultivation cost is the seed crop which on average increases by 5%, the other ~50% are contracting/own labor which increases by 15%).


Fertilizer costs include, on the one hand, the (contract) work for spreading drift manure and, on the other hand, the purchase of fertilizer and its application.

On average, the cost of spreading the slurry ~185 euros. This (labor) cost was increased by 15%.

The remaining costs are related to fertilizer. N-containing fertilizer is currently up to 5x more expensive than last year. K- and P-containing fertilizer are up to 3x more expensive. We assume that grassland receives the same amount of fertilizer as previous years, assuming a price increase of 250% (x3.5) (not all fertilizer was purchased at current peak prices). For all other crops (such as corn, for example), we assume that less fertilizer was used, so here we assume an increase of 75% (x1.75).

(Note 1: on pre-crop farms, we only assume fertilizer use. Note 2: for organic farms, we do not include fertilizer increases).

Crop Protection

Crop protection includes sprays and the associated (contract) work. In Farmdesk, we increased the total crop protection cost by 25%.

Harvest & preservation

Harvest costs include the (labor) work such as chopping, mowing... Preservation costs include the (labor) work for driving silage, preservatives, plastic... In Farmdesk, we increased the totalcost of harvest & preservation by 15%.

Getting started in Farmdesk

In Farmdesk we use this cultivation cost in two places:

  1. When you add a new feedstuff from your own crop, its cost will be automatically calculated based on the cost of cultivation. For example, for the first cut of grass from 2022, the cost price will be higher than for 2021. You can setyour farm-specific cultivation costs yourself,see screenshots below. Note: if you had previously already adjusted your cultivation costs, they will be recalculated according to the same calculation rules as above.
  2. In the Crop & Feed Planner, you can optimize a crop plan and associated feed plan to feed your cows year-round as cost-efficiently as possible. Updates to cultivation costs will help you create a more realistic plan. More info on the Crop & Feed Planner in this video.

About the authors

  • Jef Aernouts

    Jef Aernouts is the manager of Farmdesk. With experience as a product developer, a PhD in Physics and a farming background, he is the connecting bridge between digital innovation and on-farm practice.