A new cell phone app can help farmers plan how much fuel they’ll use and create a budget based on projected fuel costs.
The Farm Fuel Budget app was developed by John Nowatzki, North Dakota State University Extension ag machine systems specialist. It estimates yearly fuel costs based on the number of acres farmers intend to plant, the acreage for each crop and the field operations they will use for each crop.
The amount of fuel to be used for each field operation is calculated using machinery cost estimates published yearly by University of Minnesota Extension. Estimates are based on an average of 0.044 gallons of diesel fuel per power takeoff horsepower-hour.
“This feature is intended to help crop producers quickly see the difference in fuel consumption on their farm by changing the number of acres allocated to each crop,” Nowatzki says. “Because field operations vary significantly for each type of crop, changing the number of acres of each crop grown impacts the total fuel cost for the farm.”
Producers can use the app to determine how different tillage systems will affect fuel use. They can also change the number of acres allocated to each crop to compare total farm fuel use with different combinations.
The app allows producers to project their total fuel budget based on projected fuel costs per gallon. Available for cell phones using the Android operating system, it can be downloaded from the Google Play Store for $4.99.