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The Organic Farmer's Business Handbook: A Complete Guide to Managing Finances, Crops and Staff and Making a Profit
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The Organic Farmer's Business Handbook: A Complete Guide to Managing Finances, Crops and Staff and Making a Profit

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  92 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Contrary to popular belief, a good living can be made on an organic farm. What's required is farming smarter, not harder. In The Organic Farmer's Business Handbook , Richard Wiswall shares advice on how to make your vegetable production more efficient, better manage your employees and finances, and turn a profit. From his twenty-seven years of experience at Cate Farm in Ve ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published October 9th 2009 by Chelsea Green Publishing Co
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Apr 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
As someone who has really struggled, and still is struggling, to learn the impossible business of making a business out of a small start-up farm, I'll say that this book has been incredibly helpful. There are a number of useful worksheets in addition to clear explanations about various aspects of the financials and practicalities of starting up a farm business. I appreciate his emphasis on learning how to be efficient and the importance of prioritizing tasks - two things desperately needed as a ...more
Philip Hopkins
Good information but it's not about organic farming

I bought this book at a pretty high price looking for some advice about profitability unique to organic farming. Unfortunately the title is misleading in that regard. The book is about the business aspect of farming in general and the author throws in the word organic now and then. For example, I would like to know about the costs specific to purchasing OMRI approved products for pest and disease control, none of which were mentioned.
The author
Chloe Adeline
Apr 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book gave me a pretty clear picture of what it takes to maintain a farm from the business perspective - legally, practically, etc. The material isn't as dull as it could be, and it's easy to follow and understand. I wish there were more about marketing and finding/maintaining sales avenues, but that aside, it was pretty good.

I'm glad I have it - it will be an excellent reference when doing taxes, writing up a business plan (which it has a full chapter on!), and bringing on employees.

It is j
Mar 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
Great, practical guide for farmers to increase their profitability. I work with farmers and many of them think of that as an ugly word. All of them work very hard but many of them don't realize the fruits of their labors because they put many other values ahead of finances. But many of them then can't continue farming because they can't afford to. Wiswall lays out excellent arguments and actionable procedures to allow farmers to keep doing what they love and put themselves in their families in a ...more
Oct 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: farming
I read the newer edition which comes with a cd rom containing many different spreadsheets for helping with organizing everything on the farm. The writing style is plain, with good sense and bit of humor. I highly reccomned this book to anyone who is looking into farming as a career or is already farming. The author has some great thoughts on changing the readers way of thinking about farming.
Richard Wiswall has written an incredible, readable book about the business aspect of a small farm. He focuses mostly on how to create enterprise budgets for each crop and so determine their profitability, but he ranges from record keeping to production efficiencies. This is an easy-to-read, indispensable book that will help you figure out how to increase net profits on a small farm.
Jan 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Though "complete" might be a bit of a stretch, it does have a lot of very helpful planning and record keeping tips for the inexperienced (like myself). The worksheets included on the CD especially seem like they will be helpful.
Nov 26, 2015 added it
i juat want to have a look
Spencer Leung
Nov 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Practical farming 101

A very down to earth practical farm management book for new farmers. That is if you are dependent to your farm in earning adequate income for your family.
Feb 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
full of great info. and tips. Great reference source!
May 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, farming
Very useful book - more so than most others of this type that I've read.
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Richard Wiswall started Cate Farm in East Montpelier, Vermont, where he has farmed since 1981. Known for his work on farm profitability and appropriate business tools, Wiswall consults with other farmers, and writes and speaks frequently on organic-farm business issues. To learn more about Wiswall and Cate Farm, visit"
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