How to start Commercial Farming?
Agriculture has now become a very important part of our country’s economy. And Nowadays, many people, apart from the existing farmers, have started growing something in their garden or in containers or in their backyards as well, not as a purpose of commercial farming but just because they want to and love to.
It is very interesting because the farming business has now become a very thriving trade in most of the parts of the world and for getting popular, you don’t need to be a farmer and at least it is one of the shortest way to guarantee food to the people, and anyone can start a farming business as it doesn’t requires a lot of investment but you just need to master with some basic things.
And today, In this article we will see about starting a Commercial Farm.
The agricultural industry is one of the leading industries in almost all the countries of the world and it not only produces food for the whole population but it also provides raw materials for various industries.
Agriculture sector plays a very significant role and the governments of most of the countries provide subsidies for seedlings, fertilizers, farming equipment, machineries and they are also encouraging the entrepreneurs to go into Commercial farming business as well.
Nowadays, several business opportunities are available in the agriculture industry and there is a market for all the products from the industry.
Over the years, many researchers and scientists have also been researching ways to improve crop cultivation, especially in the areas where the composition of soil and the climatic condition does not support the growth of certain cash crops or food crops, so engineers have also improved their invention with regard to this type of farming.
So any farmer or any person who has an idea of starting an agriculture industry and wants to generate a huge income out of it, then you can start commercial farming.
Commercial Farming – A brief Sketch
Commercial farming is just about the mass cultivation of crops, rearing animals, fish and birds with an only aim of making profit. In some cases it is also referred to as Mechanized farming.
We know that with the recent advancement in technology, many farmers have started growing crops in a country very comfortably, where such crops can hardly survive and in places where there is very little farmland, the people make use of the rooftop or basement of the houses for cultivating the crops, even for commercial purposes as well.
For commercial farming, you just need to conduct market research and feasibility studies and you are not going to struggle so much to sell your farm products because there are always some Food Processing Companies and Consumers out there who are always ready to buy something from you.
At last, we can say that commercial farming can combine crop cultivation and animal husbandry and you can even decide what type of Crop or what type of cultivation or what kind of animals you want to rear in your farm.
The only thing that matters is that you should have land and you should have interest in maximizing commercial farming and it is sure that you will make huge profits from your business.
Common Types / Categories of Agriculture
Before starting any type of agriculture related business, it is very important to understand the different types of Agricultural opportunities that are popular across the world. According to the Agricultural experts, these categories of Agro based business are classified into the following categories:
- Animal Husbandry
- Fishery Science
- Agricultural Engineering
- Home Science
Things to Consider Before Starting a Farm
Agriculture business is very complicated because it has so many things to consider and the farmers must plan the business planning, finding the land, financing, marketing, production knowledge, equipment, infrastructure, vision for the farm, knowledge, experience and so many more things. Here we have mentioned some of these things to be considered.
- Vision and Values – Any Agriculture Farm is an extension of vision and value of the individual who is starting it, and he has to carefully plan all the things so that they could make sure that it fits with that vision as well as within the particular confines of the place where the farm is to be set up.
- Place matters – For the rural infrastructure, direct farms are not typically suited and different types of crops require different types of places and another important factor is Market, so as to become a successful grower.
- Planning – Every new farmer needs to have a well designed business plan and he should consider the infrastructure of the farm, the financial needs, the marketing strategies, the production capacity and knowledge.
- Education and Experience – Preparation, Knowledge and Training are very important for starting a Farm and the farmer or grower should be able to adapt to the unexpected things and should preserve when the factors go beyond his control and should know about how/when/what/where to expend his time, energy and resources.
- Managing Risk – It is very helpful to plan carefully and manage the risks involved through diversification, managing the finances and ability to withstand the conspiring factors.
- Start Small – If you are a beginner, then it is advised to start small so that you get enough time to get some additional learning or knowledge and to solve the problems that could arise and to work more on the details.
Where to Start if you’ve Never farmed Before
If you haven’t grown up on a Farm and haven’t worked on any, then it is a matter of real concern as to how you will make your dream a reality, because farming is hard and farming as a business is harder.
So for this, You need to get some Real world experience from the farmers who are running large commercial farms and have skills passed from generation to generation because it is not the same as some small type of startup farms.
Large commercial farms require so much to put on, you just don’t need skills but rather experience. It is very important to get some hands-on training because you can not simply become a farmer through some random YouTube videos or reading from books. Apart from this you need to decide whether you are starting your commercial farm just as a business or just as a hobby because hobby farming provides an opportunity to experiment on a micro scale first but for a commercial purpose, you need to be more specific with your crop.
Step by Step Guide on Starting a Farm
Here we will discuss step by step some important factors:
Step 1: Identify your Niche
Before starting your farm business, it is very important to identify your niche. It can be troublesome if you directly dive into your farm idea because market research is very important.
You should know what you want to grow and even if you are knowing that, still you should know who is going to buy your products and where are you going to sell them or how you are going to do all kinds of things. You should know about your competitors as well.
If You don’t know anything about formal type of market research practices, you can do your own research by getting out to learn more about your customers, about your distribution channels and about how to start a Farm and you can simply start it from your local market and you can check out the other existing farmer markets, meet other local producers, speak to customers as you shop, conduct surveys to see if any crops or products are under represented. You can even consult the local extension services who provide resources for most aspects of gardening and small farming.
Step 2: Find the Right Land
After figuring out what are you going to farm you need to decide whether to buy a land or lease it, and if you are buying it then you can have a complete control over its use but you can have the financial risk involved in it, so leasing a land is most popular option for many new farmers because it minimises financial risk and requires reduced capital as well. While searching for the best land, you need to consider certain things like:
- Proximity to markets
- Access to water
- Soil quality
- Facilities and Infrastructure
so as to run a successful farm business.
Step 3: Getting Financed
If you haven’t inherited a Farm previously, then to start a Farm you need money for learning it and therefore it is very important to research your funding options, from where you can get loans or who can finance your business.
Once your business takes off, you can buy the things on your own and even if you don’t have a lot of cash on hand later, the bank will be more likely to give you a loan if they see you running a profitable operation.
For seeking a loan, writing a business plan is very essential and even if you are not seeking a loan, a business plan is a very useful tool to help you figure out which of your ideas are feasible and also to remind you constantly of your goals.
and for writing a business plan, you need to determine your cost of production and you also need to know how much your rent or lease will cost you.
Step 4: Market and Sell your Products
After you have done all the above things, you need to market and sell your products and there are many different ways to market your farm products. There are a number of other channels also apart from a farmer‘s market where you can market and sell your products.
If you have enough traffic nearby, you can produce a stand or farm shop right on your own property and it can be a good option for you as well. You can even find local growers Cooperative that allow you to team up with them or with other producers to sell your products under a certain United brand.
Now, as we know that it is the age of Supermarkets, so it has made retail sales of goods more difficult but still there are plenty of small local, health and natural food stores with whom you can partner with. Also, you need to put together your marketing plan and if you are creating a business plan, marketing plan is the part of that process.
Hence, we can therefore conclude that for a successful commercial farm it is very important to have all your plannings well established.
Just knowing the skills of farming a crop is not enough, you need to have a well planned business and marketing strategies as well to make your business a success. You need to analyze your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats beforehand.