THE current cash flow problems on Irish farms are not the direct fault of the individual farmer, but are due to falling output prices and credit shortages.
Teagasc director Professor Gerry Boyle, who made the observation, said while it is hoped that this will be a short-term problem, further price fluctuations in the years ahead are expected.
Producers, therefore, will need to exercise tight financial control on farms and use all the skills and tools available to manage this volatility.
He was speaking at the launch of a new Farm Business Planning DVD which will assist farmers and students improve the skills required to manage their farm businesses.
The DVD has been produced in association with the Farm Apprenticeship Board and will be used as part of Teagasc’s education courses and with farmer clients. Farm Apprenticeship Board chairman Seamus Phelan said there are vital steps in preparing a farm business plan. The most crucial of these include analysing the current situation, setting farm goals, developing a business plan and implementing it.
“This DVD brings all of these aspects together and will help farmers and students develop the skills necessary to manage their businesses in these difficult times,” he said.
Teagasc programme manager Tom Kelly said the DVD outlines in an easy-to-understand manner the steps involved in farm business planning.
It emphasises the use of computer applications to aid with calculations such as the cost control planner, e-profit monitor, farm business planner and other farm software packages, all of which are available from Teagasc. The DVD’s mix of farmer interviews and case studies also provides clear messages for the viewer, he said.
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