Farm Performance in 2021/22

Date published: 02 March 2023

The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has published the booklet 'Northern Ireland Farm Performance Indicators 2021/22’.

DARD report

This is the twentieth edition of this annual publication, which is designed to provide farmers with reliable data to assess the performance of their farm business.

Data in the booklet are extracted from farm account information, collected as part of the 2021/22 Northern Ireland Farm Business Survey, which is undertaken by DAERA. The Northern Ireland Farm Business Survey is composed of a representative sample of farm businesses and the data accurately reflect performance levels achieved on Northern Ireland farms.

Enterprise data are presented in gross margin format. Included are details of the value of output, variable costs and gross margin for each of the main enterprises found on Northern Ireland farms. For the more common enterprises, data are presented for four different levels of performance, according to the gross margin achieved, i.e. 'Excellent', 'Good', 'Moderate' and 'Poor'. These represent the levels of performance achieved around the average performance for any particular enterprise.

Overall, ten out of fourteen of the main enterprises recorded increases in gross margins between 2020/21 and 2021/22.  The results further demonstrate a wide range in farm performance levels.  For dairy cows, the difference in gross margin per cow between enterprises classified as 'Excellent' and 'Poor' equates to £651 per cow.  In addition to enterprise gross margin data, the booklet contains information on hay, silage and grazing costs and average fixed costs by type of farm.  When using the booklet to assess farm enterprise performance it is worth keeping in mind that farm output prices and input costs have changed markedly from 2021/22 levels, which will have an impact on the 2022/23 performance indicators for individual enterprises.

Copies of 'Northern Ireland Farm Performance Indicators 2021/22’ are available, free of charge, by contacting by e-mail from:

The booklet can also be accessed on the DAERA website.

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