Agricultural Business Planning Templates and Resources


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Agricultural Business Planning Templates and Resources

  1. 1. AGRICULTURAL BUSINESS PLANNING TEMPLATES AND RESOURCES BUSINESS AND MARKETING RESOURCE LISTNational Sustainable Agriculture Information Service www.attra.ncat.orgAbstract: This resource list contains sources of business planning templates and further resources for agriculturalenterprises. These resources include Internet and print resources as well as training courses and workshops.By Holly Born Extension offices that offer such assistance, as doNCAT Agriculture Specialist many state departments of agriculture and/orJune 2004 economic development agencies. However, many producers would like to have business plan©NCAT 2004 examples and other information that is specific to agriculture. This resource list, therefore, does Table of Contents not tell you how to write a business plan, but refers you to sources of business planning in- formation and assistance that are most relevant Introduction ....................................... 1 to the smaller-scale or alternative agricultural General Agricultural Enterprise entrepreneur. Business Planning Resources ..... 1 General Agricultural Enterprise Internet and Print Resources ........2 Business Planning Resources Personal Assistance ..........................3 Related ATTRA Publications: Software Resources ..........................3 Training Courses ...............................4 Assessing the feasibility of an agricultural enterprise is the first step to developing a busi- Introduction ness plan. The following ATTRA publications will help you explore the feasibility of your enterprise ideas.Business planning is crucial to success for bothnew and established enterprises. Going through Evaluating a Rural Enterprisethe planning process increases the chances for Beef Farm Sustainability Checksheetsuccess and helps avoid costly mistakes. It can be Dairy Farm Sustainability Checksheetvery helpful to have your plan evaluated by sev- Small Ruminant Sustainability Checksheeteral people to make sure that you haven’t missed Growing Your Range Poultry Business:any vital components or issues. This critical An Entrepreneur’s Toolboxevaluation will also be helpful when presenting Holistic Managementthe plan to lenders or other potential funders. Supporting information for organic agricul-There is a great deal of information and assistance ture business planning is also available inavailable for writing and using business plans Enterprise Budgets and Production Costs forin your farm enterprise. Every state has Small Organic Production. To request publications,Business Development Centers and Cooperative call toll-free 800-346-9140, or visit the ATTRA Web site, ATTRA is the national sustainable agriculture information service operated by the National Center for Appropriate Technology, through a grant from the Rural Business-Cooperative Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. These organizations do not recommend or endorse products, companies, or individuals. NCAT has offices in Fayetteville, Arkansas (P.O. Box 3657, Fayetteville, AR 72702), Butte, Montana, and Davis, California.
  2. 2. Internet and Print Resources A sample business plan for small food businesses is available at samplebusplan.pdf.While not focused on agricultural enterprisesspecifically, BizPlanIt’s Virtual Business Plan is a A sample business plan for value-added saucesfree on-line resource that includes business plan and other Hispanic foods is available at www.fundamentals to consider and incorporate into section of your plan; highlights the mostcommon mistakes in each section of the plan; and Building a Sustainable Business: a Guide to Develop-provides other advice, articles, tips, tools, and ing a Business Plan for Farms and Rural Businesseslinks related to each section of a business plan. helps alternative and sustainable agricultureAvailable at entrepreneurs to develop profitable enterprises. Sample worksheets illustrate how real farm fami-The following British Columbia Ministry of Agri- lies set goals, researched processing alternatives,culture, Forestry, and Fisheries (BCMAFF) enter- determined potential markets, and evaluatedprise business planning templates are available financing options. Blank worksheets help pro-on the Internet: Chicken Broiler Producer, Dairy ducers to develop detailed, lender-ready businessProducer, Grains and Seeds, Bee Keeper, Cow/ plans and map out strategies to take advantage ofCalf Ranch, Greenhouse Vegetable, Greenhouse new opportunities. Print copies are available forFloriculture, Wholesale Nursery, and Direct $14 (plus $3.95 shipping and handling charge),Farm Marketing (mixed vegetables, berries, and or the publication is available free of charge atvalue-added products). These templates include information on each step of developing .pdf.agricultural enterprise business plans, and they To order print copies, contact:are very highly recommended. They are availableat Sustainable Agriculture Publicationsindex.htm. 210 Hills Building University of VermontA sample business plan for an herb enterprise Burlington, VT 05405-0082is available at 802-656-0484sample_primary.pdf. 802-656-9091 FAX sanpubs@uvm.eduA vineyard business plan workbook is availableat Getting Started in Freshwater Aquaculture is a “one-stop” resource for planning an aquacultureAdding Value to Beef Production walks you through enterprise. A CD-ROM includes sections on busi-developing a business plan for value-added beef ness planning, marketing, species selection, waterenterprises. Includes case studies of actual busi- resources needed, and production methods. Annesses. Available at accompanying workbook provides review ques-manual/sec3.html. tions, business planning forms, and example test questions. Also included are sample businessAdding Value to Pork Production walks you plans, cash flow statements, and enterprise bud-through developing a business plan for value- gets. Getting Started in Freshwater Aquaculture isadded pork enterprises. Includes case studies available for $59.95 (checks payable to Purdueof actual businesses. Available at www.ciras. University Aquaculture). To place an order, for more information, contact:An interesting sample business plan for an In- LaDon Swann, Aquaculture Specialistternet-based horse reseller is available at www. Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant Program Purdue University 1026 Poultry Science BuildingPAGE 2 //XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX Agricultural Business Planning Templates and Resources
  3. 3. West Lafayette, IN 47907-1026 sample plans, and detailed information on what 765-494-6264 should be included in the business plan. Support- ing information from any electronic source can be cut-and-pasted into the plan. Cost is $295 ($145Personal Assistance for Minnesota residents) for the Professional ver- sion and $95 for the Personal version. You canService Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE), download a free trial version of the FINPACKa national organization sponsored by the Small Business Plan at Administration (SBA), is made up loads/DownloadTrial.asp?P=BusinessPlan.more than 13,000 volunteer business executiveswho provide free counseling, workshops, and To order, or for more information, contact:seminars to prospective and existing small busi-ness people. E-mail counseling is a confidential, Center for Farm Financial Managementfast, and convenient option that is also offered University of Minnesotaby SCORE. SCORE volunteers can assist you in 130 Classroom Office Buildingdeveloping a business plan, or review an existing 1994 Buford Avenueplan. There are SCORE volunteers with expertise St. Paul, MN 55108in agriculture available. You can find them by 800-234-1111searching at If you don’t have 612-625-3105 FAXaccess to the Internet, call ATTRA, and we can the search for you. If you would prefer face- nessPlan/to-face counseling, visit their Web site or contactSCORE to find a counselor near you. Business Plan Pro 2004 is the most used busi- ness planning software available. More than SCORE Association 400 sample plans are included; among them are 409 3rd Street, SW some plans relevant to agriculture, such as plans 6th Floor for medicinal herb, tree fruit, and mixed fruit Washington, DC 20024 and vegetable enterprises. Most Small Business 800-634-0245 Development Centers offer use of this software for free or at nominal cost. If you would like yourSmall Business Development Centers (SBDCs) own copy, it costs $99.95. To order, or for moreare sponsored by the SBA, in partnership with information, call 800-229-7526, or visit www.state and local governments, the educational, and the private sector. They provide, informational resources, and on-sitecounseling for start-up and expanding businesses PlanWrite is another highly recommended busi-to create business, marketing, and other plans, ness planning software package. Sample businessdo research, and receive expert training and as- plans, some related to agriculture, and actualsistance. To locate your nearest SBDC, contact business plans from real businesses—winnersthe SBA Small Business Answer Desk at 800-827- of the prestigious MootCorp® business plan5722, or go to competition—are included. The basic versionSBA business planning resources are available costs $119.95. To order, or for more information,at call 800-423-1228 or visit ness_plan.asp.Software Resources Market Farm Forms is an excellent planning tool for diversified farms that market direct to the con- sumer or run Community Supported AgricultureFINPACK is a comprehensive financial planning operations. There are few resources for this typeand analysis system designed to help farmers of farm enterprise, and this is one of the best. De-and ranchers understand their financial situation veloped by a market farmer, Market Farm Formsand make informed decisions. The FINPACK contains computer spreadsheet templates forBusiness Plan includes a comprehensive outline, planning and organizing information on diversi- //XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX Agricultural Business Planning Templates and Resources PAGE 3
  4. 4. fied market farms. This software program will people who are starting or expanding a smallhelp you in planning crops and budgets, ordering business. For more information, contact:seed and soil amendments, growing transplants,projecting yields and income, and then tracking FastTrac National Headquarterswhat really happens compared to your projec- 4747 Troosttions. If you don’t use a computer, you can copy Kansas City, MO 64110the forms in the spiral bound manual and do the 800-689-1740 (toll-free)calculations by hand. The Market Farm Forms 816-235-6216 FAXpackage is available for Windows or Mac systems info@fasttrac.orgfor $49.95 (free shipping). It can be ordered on- www.fasttrac.orgline or by mail. Agricultural Business Planning Templates and Mail Order Department Resources Nature’s Pace Sanctuary Business and Marketing Resource List Hartshorn, MO 65479 By Holly Born 866-596-9982 NCAT Agriculture Specialist June 2004 ©NCAT 2004 RL042Training Courses Slot# 262 080404Tilling the Soil of Opportunity is a comprehen-sive, 12-week course in business planning offeredthrough the NxLeveL business planning training The electronic version of Agriculturalnetwork. Individual sessions focus on topics Business Planning Templates andsuch as marketing, financial management, how Resources is located at:to perform market research, legal issues, human HTMLresource management, risk management, and important issues. It is particularly useful ture_planning.html PDFto those considering marketing approaches such direct marketing, agri-tourism, or developing a culture_planning.pdfcooperative. Courses were available in 36 statesat the time of publication. The course fee variesfrom community to community. Each state and/or community sets its own course fee structure.To find out whether the course available in yourcommunity, or for more information, contact: Utah Small Business Development Centers 9750 South 300 West, Bldg. 5 Sandy, UT 84070 801-957-3480 801-957-3488 FAX www.nxlevel.orgFastTrac offers many business planning and feasi-bility assessment programs for entrepreneurs. Ofparticular interest is their Microenterprise seriesof programs, aimed at lower-to-middle-incomePAGE 4 //XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX Agricultural Business Planning Templates and Resources