Five Things to Consider Before Starting Your Own Farm
Starting a farm business can be really rewarding and successful, but it will also involve a lot of effort and hard work. There are several things that you need to know before proceeding with your farm planning, but you should be aware that these will also change a bit, depending on your resources, infrastructure, the size of your farm and what you want to achieve in general. Still, the following points will help you focus on becoming a farmer on your own land regardless of whether you want to go with this new job full-time or as a hobby.
Nothing beats experience
No amount of money can help you reach your desired goal in agriculture or keep your farm successful if you don’t base your decisions and business moves on experience. When it comes to farming, you learn as you go. In that respect, it would certainly be wiser to start gathering your experience away from your own entrepreneurship. The simplest way to do so is by visiting farms and talking to the farm owners for some extra advice. Of course, this will not be enough. Working at a farm for a while will give you a good insight into the inner threads that keep the farming business together a lot more than a degree in agricultural studies.
Choose your market wisely
The next important step is to select your market and preferred niche. You can’t possibly think that you can just start a farm with numerous outbuildings, livestock and crops. You need to work your way up gradually and the best way to do so is to find the specific needs in the local market for certain produce. Research is extremely valuable in this case and you can also have someone knowledgeable to do this research for you. Basically, you need to implement your farming into the core of consumer society. You shouldn’t build your business on already developed and thriving niches. Choose something that will benefit you and your community the best.
Running your own farm business may feel the same compared to other businesses in the sense that it requires similar planning strategies, organization, legal paperwork, starting investment, etc. Still, what differentiates farming from everything else is the fact that you will have to be very emotionally and physically invested in what you do. You may think that all jobs require this kind of effort but think again – unless you’re really passionate about the products you grow or caring for the livestock you keep, will you really be able to devote most of your day to chores and farming? This is hard work so keep in mind that your preferred niche should match your interests as well.
The right land
A great contributor to your overall success is the land you choose for your farm. You really need to be very meticulous about this. First of all, it’s essential that the land is relatively close to markets where you can get everything you need as well as sell your own goods. Access to water is a must have so make sure to check this out when you’re on the lookout for the perfect piece of land. If there is a well or some other natural source of water, you should request water quality report. On the other hand, if you have to deal with municipal water supply you should take into account the cost of water services in regards to your own farming needs. Another factor that can make all the difference is soil quality. Different types of soil work best for different crops. In that sense, you should consider professional soil testing in order to get the necessary predictions for the fertilizers as well as growth and health of your crops.
Facilities and infrastructure
Depending on your crops and livestock, you will need to consider specific types of outbuildings that would keep your produce and animals safe. In most cases, you will need to think about bank loans and serious investments when facilities are concerned. Apart from that, you should implement the best possible watering as well as feeding systems on your farm. Finally, transportation also plays an important role in farming business. Not only should you pay attention to the type of vehicle but to the available roads as well.
Starting your own business, and especially a farm, will undoubtedly be a process of trial and error. Therefore, set realistic goals, take things slowly and don’t feel discouraged at the first failed attempt to make something work.