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Business Planning & Tools

Tilth Conference 2019

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Business Planning & Tools

Crop Planning with Spreadsheets

  • Becky Zaneski, Full Tilth Farm
  • Regardless of what you’re growing or on what acreage, it takes vision and a plan to move from seed to start to planting, harvest and sales. It takes record-keeping and analysis to determine if a crop is worth your time to grow, or how you might make it worthwhile. Based on systems developed by Josh Volk of Slow Hand Farm and then tailored over 10 years of running her own farm businesses, Becky Zaneski will cover how to use simple spreadsheets for succession planning, field mapping in time and space, propagation planning, logging sales, cost/benefit analysis and crop enterprise budgets. Participants will have plenty of time to ask questions and will also get access to downloadable template spreadsheets. Participants can optionally bring their laptops and practice with the templates during the last part of class.

Adding Open Source Software to Your Farming Toolbelt

  • Paul Weidner, FarmOS
  • Interested in using technology in your farming operation but don't know where to start? Are current solutions cost prohibitive? Not a farmer, but still involved in the food system? Learn how software built on an open source model encourages collaboration among its community and creates more value for its users. The goal of the session is for everyone to learn of an open source technology or platform relevant to their role in the food system - we will focus on technology for growers, distributors, researchers and consumers. This session will highlight and demo five open source software projects, as well as share use cases and stories of those already using the software.

Spreadsheet Techniques for Small and Mid-Sized Farm Businesses

  • Kether Scharff-Gray, Mainstream Malt; Anna Chotzen, Viva Farms
  • This workshop will explore various techniques for organizing information, and demonstrate how good information management can serve farmers in assessing risk, making accurate projections and achieving financial viability. Considering that farmers are constantly making decisions about how much to plant, which crops to grow, which market channels to focus on, and which crops are most profitable, we will introduce several key spreadsheet tools (applicable in Excel and Google Sheets) that prove useful in making these types of management decisions. This workshop is intended to introduce participants to techniques that will enhance the record keeping systems they already have in place. Bring your laptops and your questions! Basic experience with spreadsheets is a plus, but not required. We will discuss non-spreadsheet techniques for managing information as well.
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