Feed, fertiliser and energy were 10% more expensive in November than during the same month in 2017, according to new statistics published by the CSO this Monday.
Compound feed was up 10.3% year on year, especially calf nuts (+12.4%).
Straights were even more expensive – 14% higher than the previous year.
The price of compound NPK fertilisers increased by 9.1% over the past year, while straight fertilisers jumped by 13.1%.
Electricity was up 3% year on year and motor fuels were 12% dearer – before the bulk of diesel price decreases observed this winter.
Overall, farm input costs were 6.7% higher than the year before, showing no sign of abating after 16 months of constant hikes.
Farmgate prices down
Meanwhile, prices paid to farmers fell by 2.7% year on year in November, dragged down by milk prices (-11.9%) and pig prices (-7.7%).
Cattle prices were down 4.3% over the same period.
A 38.6% improvement in crop prices, including a doubling in the price of potatoes, over the low levels since last year failed to offset the losses from the livestock sector.
The terms of trade, ie the space available for farmers to earn a margin between input and output costs, again fell by 1% in November.
While there had been improvements in the terms of trade since the end of 2016, with output prices growing faster than input costs, all these gains have now been erased.
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Listen: farm incomes drop 15% – Teagasc