Farm and Business Management (FBM) is a practice that involves coordinating all aspects your agricultural operation to maximize your income and profit potential. A broad set of skills and knowledge is used in this process including planning, management, economic analysis and marketing.

The following are the key practices to implement for managing your farm and business:

Marketing is the sale of products or services to customers; financing is the borrowing of money to finance operations; and risk management is ensuring that you are protected from disasters.

Financial – creating pro-forma budgets and actual enterprise plans to help forecast revenue and expenses; calculating financial ratios; setting goals.

Write down your plan for achieving your goals. This will help you think through the various functions in your business, and identify weaknesses.

Next, you will need to determine if your land is zoned for production or if it has zoning regulations that limit the type of production you can do. Check with your township or county if there are any restrictions and how they might affect your plans.

Your business will also need adequate public facilities, such as parking areas, signage, and customer assistance. These will be required to accommodate customers and visitors to your farm/ranch and should be maintained in compliance with zoning, food safety and environmental laws.

Ultimately, you will need a business that is self-sustaining and generates a steady income. It is important to have enough income off-farm to cover all living expenses as well as save for future business.