Wednesday, August 28, 2013

TBF 025 :: Balancing Farm Efficiencies & Capital Inputs, Farm Updates, and a Hard Lesson Learned

Most beginning farmers begin their day like any long-time/full-time farmer ... they do their morning chores, maybe help get the kids ready for school, and have breakfast. But, the majority of farmers (not just beginning farmers) then find themselves heading to town for their town job. Because forty or more hours will be spent working off the farm it is very important to build in as much efficiency as possible, or at least as much as you can afford! The big problem then becomes, "What can I make more efficient, and then how can I pay for that upgrade in equipment/infrastructure?" On my farm I began by doing many things by hand ... digging post holes, filling feeders, setting up fence, etc. But, as soon as I had a handle on what sorts of things take up the most amount of my time, cost me money, or cause undue stress on the livestock I began making changes (and purchases)

Here are four great things to think about when it comes to purchasing items that help you use your time, energy, and money more wisely ...
  1. Buy Nothing and Learn Lots! The idea is to buy as little as possible in the beginning and the slowly figure out what you need.
  2. Buy Equipment That Will Save You Money! There are some great pieces of equipment out there that will actually save you money in the long-run ... and maybe even quickly.
  3. Buy Equipment That Improves the Life of Your Livestock! We love raising happy, healthy, and stress-free animals and part of that is helped by some equipment that helps improve our efficiency.
  4. Buy Equipment That Saves You Time! If there is a task that you do quite often on your farm and there is also a piece of equipment that can save you time with that task it is sometimes worth it to make that capital expenditure.
The most important thing is to remember that you don't have to buy things just because other farmers have it, or because it feels like you need it. If you want to make the move from beginning farmer to long-time farmer you are going to have to keep some money in your pocket and just rely on your strength and patience sometimes.
If you have an input on the topic be sure to leave a comment below or send us an e-mail.

The Beginning Farmer ShowAs always, I want to thank you so much for listening and supporting the show with your encouragement and reviews on iTunes! I am continually working to produce a better show, and I'm thankful for all of the listeners sticking with me as I learn. If you do enjoy the show, don't forget that you can subscribe on iTunes and leave a five start rating and review (by clicking the link or the image on the right). If you are an Android phone user you can also subscribe on the free Stitcher App. It is so very encouraging to know that people are listening and enjoying the show!

I would love to hear your questions, show ideas, or comments about the show. Feel free to shoot me an e-mail! As always you can follow along with The Beginning Farmer and Crooked Gap Farm by checking out these links ... 

**Special Note :: A few users are experiencing issues downloading the show on iTunes. If you have any experience with podcasts and how they can play nicely with iTunes I would love some suggestions.**

(if you are interested in the music in this episode check out my brother's record label, Historic Records) 

1 comment:

MJH said...

Looking forward to hearing more about this hoop house expansion and how it will impact your bottom line. Seems like it is a big investment, that could really help you to leap forward in revenue / profit.

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