For New Farmers
How do you manage cash flow without anything resembling a steady paycheck?
Many people make the transition to farming from jobs where they received a steady paycheck. In operations such as vegetable farms, there are high expenses in spring but no income until mid-summer or fall. This can make it difficult to pay the bills!
- Learn sound financial management. Training in financial management can help you plan ahead and use your money wisely. See the business planning and training resources above.
- Obtain operating loans. Many farmers rely on loans to provide operating capital to make it through the season.
- Consider starting a Community Supported Agriculture strategy. This marketing strategy addresses seasonal cash flow difficulties. Customers pay ahead and buy a "share" of produce in winter or early spring, and then pick up their food weekly throughout the growing season. Some innovative farmers are adapting this strategy for meats and other farm products.
- First Pioneer Farm Credit Offer operating capital, asset, and real estate loans for Massachusetts farmers. https://www.firstpioneer.com
- Farm Service Agency FSA provides government loans for farmers who are unable to obtain credit from commercial lenders. FSA has targeted funds for loans to beginning farmers. http://www.fsa.usda.gov/