Farming is one of the primary activities in any country and if you want to get into this business and do not have any prior experience in this field you should follow a systematic approach to begin with. But first, you have to ask yourself why you would want to get into this business. Why would you want to relocate to a rural area and devote yourself to raising crops and livestock after leaving an urban setting where more money can be made?
You have to understand too that farming requires a lot of hard work and is not a venture where you can mint money from the word go. Only if you can accept farming and being a farmer as a way of life should you get into it. The joy of getting the pay check at the end of the year after selling your produce will then far exceed the ones you would have got monthly from a regular 9 to 5 job.
Here are a few tips to make things easy for you.
- Choose the farm venture after a lot of thought – There are two categories that you can consider. The first is crops which includes seed or grain production, citrus and apple orchards, vegetable production and hay and silage production. The other is livestock such as raising beef and/or dairy cattle, hogs, poultry, horses, sheep and goats. Initially, it is advisable to choose one and later expand into comprehensive farming if you want to. It is generally considered that larger the farm is the more specialised will it be in one of the two categories.
- Meet experienced farmers – Once you have decided on your chosen area of farming, meet farmers who are engaged in similar type of activity. You can even ask for a tour of their farm and you can be sure that they will accede to your request. You can also make an online search of upcoming farming and agricultural events and attend as many of them as you can. You will be able to meet producers, marketeers and buyers of produce over there. Talk to them and gain an insight of this business.
- Gain knowledge and expertise – There are a number of ways to approach this. The first is to utilise sources such as books, agricultural newspapers and magazines and podcasts on the subject especially in your chosen area. Your research should include as many aspects as possible, from skills required to carry out various crop producing activities to operating farm machinery to marketing of your produce. You should also gain valuable knowledge in climatic conditions like precipitation amounts and storm or drought conditions where you plan to locate your farm. Further, you can take up programmes and courses offered by colleges and universities. Opt for online courses if you want study simultaneously with farming activity.
- Consider relocation – If you want to achieve your goal of becoming a farmer, you will definitely have to relocate from your urban residence to where you are setting up your farm. This too should be done after careful thought as some areas in a country are more receptive and conducive for setting up farms than others.
Follow these simple guidelines and you should be able to make a success of your farming venture.