Many factors should be considered before establishing or renovating a pasture. Producers must invest their time and financial resources wisely to remain economically viable in today's competitive environment and achieve the best possible results for a sound, lasting pasture.
Budgets can be used to make economical decisions when establishing or renovating a pasture in Florida. This document is a guide for evaluating the costs of establishing a seeded-type pasture (such as bahiagrass or seeded bermudagrass) versus vegetatively propagated hybrid bermudagrasses (such as Tifton 85, Jiggs, or Tifton 44). For production, adaptation, and quality comparisons, refer to the Forages of Florida website, where a description of the different grasses is provided (http://sfyl.ifas.ufl.edu/agriculture/forages/).
An enterprise budget should be the starting point for the development of a cost versus benefits analysis. The development of a budget can help lead producers to make an economic conclusion and a business decision as it relates to an individual farming enterprise. After due diligence, the producer may decide to pursue pasture establishment or renovation if the future returns outweighs the forecasted expenditures. Conversely, if the analysis indicates it is not efficient to proceed, then alternatives can be considered. These may include pasture rental and/or purchasing the appropriate livestock forage.
The Cost Presented Throughout This Publication
The input costs provided are comprised of static, statewide composite figures and are likely to be different from those encountered in individual market areas, which are influenced by a variety of factors. These factors may include time of year, location within Florida, farm supply businesses (which are competing for sales), market dynamics (which can raise or lower cost by changing demand or supply), weather events, modification of the regulatory environment, or some combination of the aforementioned. The prices in the following tables were representative data in June 2018.