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7 November 2023

When is self-building a fruit canopy profitable?

When is self-building a fruit canopy profitable?

Are you faced with the decision to purchase a fruit canopy? With only loose materials, your orchard is not protected. A fruit canopy needs to be assembled. In general, there are 4 options for assembly.

  1. Complete turnkey by an assembly company
  2. Working together with an assembly company (support);
  3. Advice during construction from an assembly company (supervision);
  4. Self-build.

I have already written a blog about these options once. Can I build my fruit canopy myself? We are often asked whether self-building a fruit canopy is cost-effective. In this blog, I am going to answer that question.

Investment costs fruit canopy

To determine whether self-building is profitable, you need an overview of the investment. Below is an overview of the investment costs if you are completely unburdened.

Investment hail net cover per hectare

Investment

foil cover per hectare

Turnkey

+/- € 12.500,-

+/- € 25.000,-

Now we will calculate together whether self-assembly is profitable on the basis of various factors. After all, you need to pay attention to several factors if you are going to self-assemble.

1. Contract work

Het palen drukken en ankers draaien wordt altijd uitgevoerd door een loonwerker. De investering is gemiddeld € 2.500,- per hectare.

2. Man-hours

Assembling a fruit canopy requires hands and time. Over one hectare of hail net canopy, you build an average of 375 man hours. Over one hectare of film canopy, you build an average of 600 man hours. The hourly wage is different for each fruit grower. Here, we calculate an average hourly wage of € 25.

Investment in hours of hail net cover per hectare

Investment in film canopy hours per hectare

Self-built

(375*25) = € 9.375,-

(600*25) = € 15.000,-

I have taken an average number of hours per hectare above. Of course, this depends on individual skills and speed. You don't build a fruit canopy alone. It is efficient to assemble with at least 2 people. A proper boom lift and good tools will also save time.

hoogwerker agricom

3. Aerial work platform

Fruit canopies often have a height of 4 or 5 metres. To work safely at height, an aerial work platform is needed. Do you already have an aerial work platform? Then calculate an average of € 1,000 per hectare for hail nets. An average of € 1,500 per hectare for film canopies.

Do you need to hire an aerial platform? Then you often spend more money. For a hail-net roof, an average of € 2,500 per hectare. For a foil cover on average € 4,000 per hectare.

Investment aerial work platform hail net cover per hectare

Investment aerial work platform foil cover per hectare

Own a aerial platform

€ 1.000,-

€ 1.500,-

Aerial platform rental

€ 2.500,-

€ 4.000,-

4. Machinery and tools

Besides a work platform, other machines and tools are needed. Think of a wire unwinder, hand pliers and cutters. As well as small tools. The investment in machines and tools averages €1,500. You can of course use the machines and tools more often.

PS Every supplier knows which machines and tools are needed. You often get a handbook detailing exactly that.

Total investment with self-build

Now we have calculated the various factors together. Below is an overview of the investment when you build a fruit canopy yourself.

Investment hail net cover (per hectare)

Film canopy investment (per hectare)

Contract work

€ 2.500,-

€ 2.500,-

Hours

€ 9.375,-

€ 15.000,-

Aerial platform

€ 2.500,- (or € 1.000,-)

€ 4.000,- (or € 1.500,-)

Machines and tools

€ 1.500,-

€ 1.500,-

Total

€ 15.875,-

€ 23.000,-

Below is the difference in full de-risking or self-build:

Investment hail net cover (per hectare)

Film canopy investment (per hectare)

Turnkey

+/- € 12.500,-

+/- € 25.000,-

Self-built

+/- € 15.875,-

+/- € 23.000,-

So it is not cost-effective to build a hail-net canopy yourself. A foil canopy, on the other hand, is cost-effective!

DISCLAIMER All amounts are average. Also, the more hectares, the more advantageous the investments can be. 

Prices mentioned in this blog are for October 2023. Check the current prices here.

Did you know that we also have a tool where you can calculate for yourself whether self-build is profitable? Click here.


Rick Mudde - English

Rick Mudde

Product specialist fruit canopies

My mission is to help as many fruit growers as possible get a good harvest.

So that fruit damage can be prevented, no delivery problems occur, and fruit growers can harvest successfully!

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