New UC study estimates raspberry production costs on Central Coast

Jan 4, 2024

A new study that estimates costs and potential returns for growing raspberries on the Central Coast is available for free from UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, UC Cooperative Extension and the UC Davis Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.

“These studies provide growers with a baseline to estimate their own costs, which can help when applying for production loans, projecting labor costs, securing market arrangements, or understanding costs associated with water and nutrient management and regulatory programs,” said Brittney Goodrich, UC Cooperative Extension specialist and study co-author.

The UC Cooperative Extension study focuses on raspberries grown in Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito counties for the fresh market.

The cost study models a management scenario for a 45-acre farm, 42 acres of which are planted to raspberries. The remaining acres are for the irrigation system, roads and buildings. Each study describes the cultural practices used for establishing, producing and harvesting raspberries, including land preparation, soil fertility and pest management, irrigation and labor needs.      

The 36-page study shows costs for each operation, material inputs and costs, and cash and non-cash overhead costs in a variety of formats for three production years. A ranging analysis for each production year is also included and shows potential profits or losses over a range of prices and yields. The authors also note California's 2023 minimum wage and overtime rules.

The new study, “2023 Sample Costs to Produce and Harvest Raspberries,” can be downloaded from the UC Davis Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics website at  

For a detailed explanation of the assumptions and calculations used to estimate the costs and potential returns for each crop, readers can refer to the narrative portion of the study. 

For more information, contact Mark Bolda, University of California Cooperative Extension farm advisor, at, Laura Tourte, emeritus UC Cooperative Extension farm advisor, at, or Jeremy Murdock in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at

Sample cost of production studies for many other commodities grown in California are also available for free at

By Pamela S Kan-Rice
Author - Assistant Director, News and Information Outreach