Friday, August 6, 2021


Beginners Guide For Starting A Farm Business.

December 18, 2018 by  
Filed under Money/Business, Weekly Columns

(Akiit.com“We know that America’s farmers and rural communities are vitally important to our nation’s economy, producing the food, feed, fiber and fuel that continue to help us grow.” – usda.gov

If you yearn to be outdoors, you don’t mind getting your hands and clothes grubby, are physically fit and agile and enjoy the rewarding prospect and challenging nature of nurturing and growing food and/or animals, starting a farm business may be your calling. The basics below cover some of the vital aspects you will need to consider before starting your business, to avoid costly mistakes and to steer your business in the right direction towards success.

Experience

Unless you were raised on a farm or worked on a farm previously, it is essential for you to gain relevant experience in this area. You can do this by working as an apprentice with a seasoned farmer (a mentor) or if you are already working, you could ask to volunteer on a farm on the weekends. Alongside this, consider reading about agriculture and farming to boost your knowledge, and if time and money allow choose to enroll on a farming course. During collating your experience, you will begin to better understand your motives and passion for wanting to become a farmer, this passion is what will fuel you to persist when you reach hurdles in business. Aside from a mentor and outside reading, you could also start a mini farm and use your backyard to begin growing a few crops.

Farm Business Research

Choosing a niche is vital to establish what you want to grow and whether there is market demand. To drill down to what niche will positively answer these questions, start by committing a lot of your time to market research. Analyzing the market will enable you to gather valuable information such as; what is possible to grow in your climate, what soil you require if there is a demand in your local area and if it is possible to transport the produce to another location cost-effectively.

To get started on your research, attend farmers markets and shops to see what they’re selling and for how much. Speak to the customers about why they are buying certain products and what would they like to see more of. Alongside surveying markets, contact your local state department of agriculture to access local resources and knowledge about the licenses you will require and how much this will cost, such as food safety and pesticide licenses.

Choosing The Land

Once you’ve established your niche and collected market research, you will need to either rent or purchase land to use for farming. The attributes you will need to consider are the following;

 

  • Soil Quality – Request soil tests from the existing owner to test the quality and PH level of the soil, to discover whether it is well suited to grow that which you desire to farm.
  • Proximity – The location of the land and transport routes to ferry produce to and from markets.
  • Facilities – Such as buildings to house storage, for instance, pesticides and/or water in large cone bottom poly tanks for fertilizing and watering the crop,  a building to shelter farm animals and a place to secure your keep equipment. 

For beginners, the steps highlighted above such as; gaining hands-on experience, conducting market research and choosing the right land will enable you to create a strong foundation to rest your farming business.

Staff Writer; Peter James


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