Business & Financial Planning Toolkit

This Toolkit contains resources in the following categories. Note: Some resources appear in multiple categories.

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Overview

Basics to successful business and financial planning, record-keeping, managing risk, and maintaining a sustainable farm operation.


Source: FarmsReach | Type: Info Sheet
Assess profit and value of your farm; manage cash flow; keep your books in order; and help prepare for loans.


Source: SARE | Type: Reference
Comprehensive workbook to develop a whole-farm business plan. For new and experienced farmers.


Source: University of Minnesota – Center for Farm Financial Management | Type: Software Tool
Tool to manage balance sheets, monthly cash flow, long-range strategy, and overall financial analysis.


Type: Software Tool
Farm management and planning tool, with streamlined record-keeping features.


Source: University of Minnesota – Center for Farm Financial Management | Type: Software Tool
Business plan developer, including resources and tips on what to include and samples.


Type: Software Tool
Used for expense tracking, payroll and payment processing, tax and bank information tracking, and more.

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Starting a New Farm

Basic resources on what to grow, which markets to sell to, and elements any new farm business should consider.


Source: FarmsReach | Type: Info Sheet
Basics for those who have never considered or successfully applied for a farm loan: lender relationships, alternative funding sources, utilizing a good financial record, and doing your homework.


Source: ATTRA | Type: Reference
Guide to help beginning farmers determine what to grow and to whom and how to sell it. Order hardcopy - $3.00


Source: ATTRA | Type: Checklist
Rules, regulations, tax liabilities, and insurance requirements to consider before starting a business.


Source: ATTRA | Type: Reference
Learn several financing options for starting a farm and the step-by-step process of applying for a loan.


Source: National Good Food Network | Type: Webinar
A walk-through of the documents with tips and examples, and then a short Q&A session.


Source: eOrganic | Type: Webinar
Author Richard Wiswall shows how to track income and expenses to reveal your profit centers.


Source: VT New Farmer Project | Type: Webinar
Basics of pricing your products, how to calculate your break-even point, and how to adjust your prices without losing your customers. Registration required.


Source: NCAT/ATTRA & CA FarmLink | Type: Reference
A well-organized, comprehensive guide for CA farmers to understand the federal and state laws pertaining to labor, apprentices and interns.

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Analyzing Financial Performance of Crops

Keep track of production costs, income, and expenses for each crop, and measure overall financial sustainability year to year.


Source: FarmsReach | Type: Info Sheet
Assess profit and value of your farm; manage cash flow; keep your books in order; and help prepare for loans.


Source: Richard Wiswall, The Organic Farmer’s Business Handbook | Type: Spreadsheet
Decision-making tool to analyze the income and expenses of each crop.


Source: VT New Farmer Project | Type: Webinar
Basics of pricing your products, how to calculate your break-even point, and how to adjust your prices without losing your customers. Registration required.


Source: University of Wisconsin-Madison | Type: Calculator/Wizard
Calculates cost of production for each crop and the profitability of each market channel.


Source: University of Wisconsin-Madison | Type: Reference
Complete user guide for the online financial management tool: Veggie Compass.


Type: Software Tool
Farm management and planning tool, with streamlined record-keeping features.

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Preparing Basic Financial Reports

Basic templates to measure financial performance over time and make informed financial decisions for the future of your business.


Source: FarmsReach | Type: Info Sheet
Assess profit and value of your farm; manage cash flow; keep your books in order; and help prepare for loans.


Source: Richard Wiswall, The Organic Farmer's Business Handbook | Type: Spreadsheet
Calculate your operation's assets, equity and liability.


Source: Vermont Farm Viability Enhancement Program | Type: Spreadsheet
Measure the success of your business in terms of net income and loss. Also called a profit and loss statement.


Source: Farm Service Agency | Type: Spreadsheet
Record-keeping tool to document your operation’s cash-in and cash-out for each month, quarter or year.


Source: University of Minnesota – Center for Farm Financial Management | Type: Software Tool
Tool to manage balance sheets, monthly cash flow, long-range strategy, and overall financial analysis.


Type: Software Tool
Used for expense tracking, payroll and payment processing, tax and bank information tracking, and more.

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Farm Financing

How to secure financing for your operation through grants and loans, raising capital, and working with financial lenders.


Source: FarmsReach | Type: Info Sheet
Basics for those who have never considered or successfully applied for a farm loan: lender relationships, alternative funding sources, utilizing a good financial record, and doing your homework.


Source: FarmsReach | Type: Info Sheet
Full transcript from the workshop at the 2014 CA Small Farm Conference, where the three main farm microloan funds in CA (FSA, CA FarmLink and KivaZip) shared the in's and out's of accessing their funding, and two farmers who recently received microloans shared their experience and advice for other farmers.


Source: FarmsReach | Type: Info Sheet
Funds available through USDA, CDFA, SARE and others, including deadlines, program details, eligibility requirements, and contacts.


Source: ATTRA | Type: Reference
Learn several financing options for starting a farm and the step-by-step process of applying for a loan.


Source: RAFI-USA | Type: Reference
Tool to help transitioning farmers prepare and present a business plan to agricultural lenders unfamiliar with diversified operations.

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Insurance

Which insurance policies are right for your operation and where to find the lowest rates in your area.


Source: FarmsReach | Type: Info Sheet
When to review your policies, what to consider in general coverage & workers comp, and how to choose a broker.

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Record-Keeping

Farm management software tools to help you keep more detailed and easy-to-track records year to year.


Source: University of Minnesota – Center for Farm Financial Management | Type: Software Tool
Tool to manage balance sheets, monthly cash flow, long-range strategy, and overall financial analysis.


Type: Software Tool
Farm management and planning tool, with streamlined record-keeping features.


Source: University of Minnesota – Center for Farm Financial Management | Type: Software Tool
Business plan developer, including resources and tips on what to include and samples.


Type: Software Tool
Used for expense tracking, payroll and payment processing, tax and bank information tracking, and more.


Type: Software Tool
Track detailed production records, and generate reports sent electronically to your certification provider.

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Taxes

What you need to do to file correctly, legally, and on-time.


Source: IRS | Type: Reference
How to report farm income, deductible expenses, self-employment tax, and deductions for buying or improving land.

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