Planning to venture into farming in 2014? Get Prepared!!
When planning to venture into any new business, major decisions need to be made prior to the actual investment. These decisions require intensive research in the area of interest and developing a business plan to ensure that the venture will be successful. A good business plan acts as a dynamic blueprint for running and expanding your business. A business plan contains all of your organization information, manpower and financial estimates and your plans for the future. As you look to grow your business, you should refer to your business plan. When you decide to make changes to your business, those changes should be reflected in your business plan. When you make updates to your business plan, you get to see how your proposed changes will affect your entire business. Your business plan reminds you of why you started your business in the first place, what your original goals were and how business changes will affect your original vision. To make the transition easier, think about what you have a passion to do. Having a passion for the production makes the entire process more enjoyable. A list of topics to consider prior to beginning includes:
- Marketing opportunities
- Harvesting and storage
- Risk management
- Environmental regulations
- Where to find information
Before beginning any production, you need to know if there is a market for what you plan to produce and where that market may be. Another marketing decision is whether you are going to market wholesale or retail. Wholesale marketing may be the easiest, but may not provide enough income to sustain your enterprise. Retail marketing will take more time to develop as you will need to develop relationships with potential customers or find a farmers’ market that has enough traffic to market you production. One recommendation is to start small and grow into your market.
There are usually several production options for any agriculture sector you plan to venture into. For example, if considering horticulture, you have the option of green houses or open land, irrigation or rain reliance, plasticulture or organically certified?
Any production contains risk. You are at the mercy of the weather, markets, and inputs that you cannot control. There are insurance products you can take advantage of to help alleviate some of these concerns.
Always do a due diligence in the area of interest, ensure you have all the necessary information before you put in your hard earned cash into a project. The project may look simple from the people doing it or from the papers, but without necessary knowledge will be destined to fail.