Plan2Farm helping farmers make the right call
A new business planning tool is helping farmers make some important decisions for their future.
The North Central Catchment Management Authority (CMA) has had great success with its Plan2Farm program and is extending it with its new Irrigation Farm Business Plan workbook.
“Plan2Farm focus is helping irrigated farmers across the Goulburn Murray Irrigation District plan for their future and their farm’s future,” North Central CMA Plan2Farm Project Manager Jacqui Knee said.
“Farmers involved told us they created a clear vision for their future and had greater confidence in their decision making from working through the original workbook and actioning their plans.
The Irrigation Farm Business Plan is an online workbook that helps farmers think about the future of their business, with their families and everyone else involved.
“What we know is resources like this are really helpful when farmers are at the crossroads, when they have some critical decisions to make about their future,” Ms Knee said.
“They are asking themselves big questions about things such as upgrading their on-farm irrigation system, changing their enterprises, or handing the business onto the next generation.
“The Irrigation Farm Business Plan lays it all out for them and, importantly, helps them take the emotion out of their decision making.
“Farmers have told us these discussions can be quite hard and got the most out of the workbook when they worked through it with an independent third party, like their local farm business management consultant.”
The workbook also includes the Irrigation Health Check for the first time.
“This tool helps farmers consider their exposure to the water market and the efficiency of the irrigation system, and the influence this may have on their future farming business,” Ms Knee said.
With such a large part of the catchment private land, Ms Knee said the health of the region’s farming properties was important for everyone.
“We have tested this with farmers and they have told us this helps them to make decisions that are better informed,” she said.
“And that’s why we’re here. The North Central CMA knows how important the farming industry is to local communities, and we want to do what we can to help it thrive.”