A business plan could be a good tool to help you plan for your farming business. In most cases its also a requirement of securing grants and loans. The process of writing one may be seen as overwhelming and intimidating at first, but when broken down, it becomes easy to manage and write. A business plan is a roadmap for your farming business venture. During the process of writing one, you will need to develop an inclusive vision and mission for your business. You are required to think about both short term and long-term goals. You will define the major steps required to achieve your goals. You will also set the direction for your business to grow over the next five years.
Your farm business mission statement is your main purpose for your business. Why does your farm exist? What purpose does your farm serve? Where is your farm headed? This should be beyond making money. Your mission statement should be based on your values and your core identity as a small farm.
These should be specific, measurable, things that you might achieve with your little farm. Short term goals are considered to take shorter than one year while long-term goals take more than an year to accomplish.
Smart Goals are:
- Rewarding, and have a
In this area of your business plan, take account of what you have right now. These might include;
- The area of land that you are farming
- When you began farming
- How you are operating currently
- What general practices do you use for such things as conservation, tillage, environmental impact, and marketing?
This is where your business plan gets to looking forward. You are going to formulate your farm strategy from now into the next five years or so.
You will need to gather information and research markets. Make sure that your farm plan fits into the general market in terms of supply and demand. Investigate and analyze industry trends, identify competitors, and define buyers. Another requirement is a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis. This is an analytical tool that can be used in making decisions
Marketing Plan and Strategy
You need to develop and outline a marketing strategy for your products and services. This can build on the research you did in the previous step. For each product, include price, placement, and promotion ideas. Consider how you will convey real and perceived value to your customers.
This part of your business plan details your farm business’ structure. Everyone who is involved in the management of the business should be listed here. External resources are listed here as well.
In this section, you will need to detail the financial aspect of your farming operation. List your current finances in detail, including all income and operating expenses. Referring to your new strategy, you will forecast what is needed for future growth and to meet the goals you have outlined in terms of capital. Include what your future operating expenses will be.
People view a business plan as a big project. Don’t be put off by that, your plan can be as simple as it needs to be. Begin with your mission statement and goals. Do your homework by analyzing markets and researching competitors and trends. Have fun brainstorming alternative strategies and let them marinate a while.