Production Budget for Tomatoes in Southwest Florida ( Publisher's URL )

Material Information

Production Budget for Tomatoes in Southwest Florida
Physical Description:
Fact Sheet
VanSickle, John
University of Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agriculture Sciences, EDIS
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date:


Collected for University of Florida's Institutional Repository by the UFIR Self-Submittal tool. Submitted by Melanie Mercer.
Publication Status:
General Note:
"Published December 2009."
General Note:

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida Institutional Repository
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All rights reserved by the submitter.
System ID:

This item is only available as the following downloads:

Full Text


John VanSickle, Scott Smith, and Eugene McAvoy2 1. This is EDIS document FE818, a publication of the Food and Resource Economics Department, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. Published December 2009. Please visit the EDIS website at 2. John VanSickle, professor, Food and Resource Economics Department, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL; Scott Smith, economic analyst, Food and Resource Economics Department, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL; and Eugene McAvoy, county extension director, Hardee County Extension, LaBelle, FL, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. Tomatoes are an important crop to the state of Florida. Florida harvested 31,500 acres of tomatoes during the 2007 growing season, valued at over $622 million dollars (Table 1). Acreage planted to tomatoes in Florida decreased 15 percent in 2008, and has decreased 28 percent since 2005. While total value increased in 2008 by 46 percent, to $622 million, it has decreased from its peak in 2005 by 22 percent. Yield per acre (25-pound cartons) averaged 1,418 cartons per acre from 2002 to 2007. Production peaked in 2004 at 62.1 million cartons, but decreased to 41.8 million cartons in 2007, a 32 percent decrease. Value per carton ranged from a low of $7.98 in 2006 to a high of $14.88 in 2007. Production practices vary among Florida's tomato production areas. Most of the state's tomato crop is grown on polyethylene-mulched raised beds, using staked culture and drip or seep irrigation. Fertilizer may be applied at planting under the plastic or a portion may be applied at planting, and the rest throughout the season with the drip irrigation system. Methyl bromide in combination with chloropicrin is applied to a majority of Florida's tomato acreage. Fumigants are injected into the soil during construction of the raised beds and are immediately covered with plastic mulch. Fumigants are applied for the management of soil insects, pathogens, nematodes, and weeds (especially nutsedge), all of which are major pests in tomato production. Tomato transplants are set in the mulched raised beds. Standard spacing is approximately six feet between bed centers, with plants typically planted 18 to 30 inches apart. Wooden or metal stakes approximately four feet long are placed halfway between the plants and driven into the beds for tying the plants. Pruning and tying provide vertical support. Tomatoes mature 90 to 110 days after transplanting. Tomatoes are typically harvested two to four times per season but potentially more often in profitable market conditions. Table 2 is a per-acre composite budget for a representative grower in southwest Florida. The budget breaks down the specific cost components used to estimate the budget expense categories and total estimated production costs per acre. The budget


Production Budget for Tomatoes in Southwest Florida 2 is intended to reflect the cost of production using representative production practices that are considered typical for tomatoes grown in southwest Florida. What constitutes a representative production practice is defined by a consensus of opinion of UF/IFAS field experts, industry experts, and various producers in the tomato production area. Cost estimates resulting from this process do not represent the average cost of production in a statistical sense, and production practices listed are not necessarily recommended production practices. The intent of these cost budgets is to establish a benchmark within a comprehensive range of potential costs that could be expected to produce the crop. Table 2 provides a Your Cost column so that you can enter your individual expenses for comparative purposes. The production budget for 2008 indicates that pre-harvest variable costs for a representative tomato grower in southwest Florida totaled $6,688 per acre. Fixed costs for a representative grower totaled $4,335 per acre. With an assumed yield of 1,500 cartons per acre, harvest and marketing costs totaled $5,235 per acre, bringing the total cost of production to $16,259 per acre, or $10.84 per carton. The cost item that has increased most significantly since the 2,005 budget is fertilizer, which increased 239 percent. Overall, operating costs, excluding the fertilizer expense, have increased a total of 12 percent since 2005. We have developed interactive workbooks containing data used to create the UF/IFAS estimated tomato budget in Table 2. These workbooks can be used to produce cost estimates broken down by specific groups (e.g., herbicide). Included in these workbooks are pesticide worksheets listing all of the currently labeled pesticides so that users can estimate their own pesticide costs, and machinery worksheets listing the machinery cost coefficients so that users can estimate their own fixed and variable costs. The International Agricultural Trade and Policy Center internet site ( contains a link to download these interactive Excel workbooks. These workbooks enable users to compare their production expenses to the UF/IFAS estimates presented in Table 2. These workbooks may be saved to your computer and printed in their entirety or printed as individual worksheets. The following information is provided as a convenience to your research and decision making efforts. Botany: Family-Solanaceae, Tomato-Solanum esculentum. Related Crops in the Solanaceae Family: Potato, Pepper, Eggplant, Tomatillo and Pepino. Common Tomato Varieties for Commercial Production: Large Fruited Varieties; Amelia, Bella Rosa, BHN-640, Crista, Crown Jewel, Flora-Lee, Florida 47, Florida 91, HA 3073, Linda, Phoenix, Quincy, RPT 6153, Sanibel, Sebring, Solar Fire, Salimar, Soraya, Talladega, Tygress. Plum Type Varieties; BHN 410. Midsesaon, BHN 411, BHN 685, Marianna, Monica, Plum Daddy, Spectrum 882 and Sunoma. Cherry Type Varieties; BHN 268, Camelia, Cherry Blossom, Mountain Belle, Shiren, Supper Sweet 100 VF. Grape Varieties; Brixmore, Cupid, Jolly Elf, Santa, St Nick, Smarty and Tami G. For further information on tomato production in Florida please refer to EDIS publication HS739 ( or contact your local Extension specialists. Olson, S.M., W.M. Stall, M.T. Momol, S.E. Webb, T.G. Taylor, S.A. Smith and E.H. Simone. 2007. Chapter 41, Tomato Production in Florida. In Vegetable Production Handbook for Florida 2006-2007. Electronic Data Information Source EDIS document HS739. Horticultural Science Department, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL.


Production Budget for Tomatoes in Southwest Florida 3 USDA/NASS. 2009. Crop Statistics. United States Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Statistics Service, Washington, D.C.


Production Budget for Tomatoes in Southwest Florida 4 Florida tomatoes acreage, fresh market production, and value, crop years, 2002 through 2007. Season Planted Harvested Yield Production Unit Value Total Value (acres) (acres) (25-lb bushels) (1,000 bushels) (dollars) (1,000 dollars) 200243,30043,000 1,320 56,760 9.70 550,572 200342,40042,000 1,440 60,480 8.28 500,472 200445,20042,000 1,480 62,160 12.95 804,972 200541,20038,500 1,400 53,900 10.23 551,128 200638,20037,800 1,540 58,212 7.98 464,241 2007 32,400 31,500 1,328 41,832 14.88 622,251 Source: USDA/NASS, Note: Fresh market tomatoes only, including round and plum/pear varieties, and U-Pick. Estimated costs of producing one acre of tomatoes in southwest Florida, 2007. Based on Yield of 1,500 Units Per Acre Unit Quantity Price Value Your Cost (dollars) (dollars) Pre-Harvest Variable Costs Transplants 480.00 Fertilizer, mixed and lime 1,452.25 Fumigant 736.00 Herbicide 24.75 Insecticide 548.60 Fungicide 275.99 Tractor + machinery 1,109.69 Truck (pickup) 27.33 Labor 354.92 Plastic mulch 315.00 Scouting 45.00 Trickle tube 145.20 Stakes 90.00 Cut/pull/bundle mulch 163.35


Production Budget for Tomatoes in Southwest Florida 5 Estimated costs of producing one acre of tomatoes in southwest Florida, 2007. Based on Yield of 1,500 Units Per Acre Unit Quantity Price Value Your Cost (dollars) (dollars) Plastic string 28.75 Tie plants 145.20 String and stake disposal 123.42 Prune plants 79.86 Level land 145.00 Drive stakes 81.31 Cross ditch 27.20 Interest on operation capital (10%) 289.47 Total Pre-Harvest Variable Costs 6,688.29 Pre-Harvest Fixed Costs Tractor + machinery 208.15 Land rent 500.00 Overhead and management 3,627.20 Total Pre-Harvest Fixed Costs 4,335.35 Total Pre-Harvest Costs 11,023.64 Harvest and Marketing Costs Pick/pack/haul carton1,500 2.503,750.00 Sell carton1,500 0.15225.00 Containers carton1,500 0.751,125.00 Organization fees carton1,500 0.09135.00 Total Harvest and Marketing Costs 5,235.00 Total Costs 16,258.64