New Book from OSU Small Farms Program - Whole Farm Management: From Start Up to Sustainability

Publish Date: Winter 2020

Operating a farm business requires managing dreams, crops, people, markets, money, and reality. Whole Farm Management: From Start Up to Sustainability provides guidance for starting, nurturing, and maintaining a farm business. Drawing on the experience and insights of 12 contributing authors and 16 farmers from across North America, the book offers a holistic approach to farm management for small and medium size farms that use sustainable and organic methods, and sell their products through local and regional markets.

Conceptually, whole farm management helps farmers identify the many connections and interactions within the farm and develop an integrated approach to decision-making that considers all the components of the farm business—environmental, economic, and social.

The chapters lead beginning and experienced farmers through the interconnecting parts of a whole farm with the goal of making good decisions based on knowledge of the effects each part of the farm has on all parts of the farm:

  • Dream It: Plan and manage goals for an ideal farm
  • Do It: Develop a strategy for farm operations and resources
  • Sell It: Create marketing plans for selling crops
  • Manage It: Implement successful business accounting practices
  • Grow It: Work with the natural cycles of the farm ecosystem to support long-term farm sustainably
  • Keep It: Maintain success with practical farm family business strategies

The 16 farmers featured as case studies in the book represent 9 farms from across the United States, producing a variety of crops and livestock. Their experience covers a wide range of production systems, business models, and environments, and includes new start-up farms as well as multigeneration farms. Each has a unique story in terms of how he or she has developed the farm business. Featured farms include:

  • Blue Fox Farm, Applegate, Oregon
  • Goodfoot Farm, Kings Valley, Oregon
  • Good Work Farm, Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania
  • Kiyokawa Family Orchards, Hood River Valley, Oregon
  • Rainshadow Organics, Terrebonne, Oregon
  • Slow Hand Farm, Portland, Oregon
  • Sweet Home Farms, Sweet Home, Oregon
  • Urban Buds: City Grown Flowers, St. Louis, Missouri
  • Vanguard Ranch, Gordonsville, Virginia

The 12 contributing authors work in educational capacities in farm production, food system development, family and farm business management, and as farmers. They are associated with the Center for Small Farms & Community Food Systems, and Austin Family Business Program at Oregon State University, Oregon Tilth, Inc., and small organic farms.

“This book empowers anyone to start planting seeds for a future farm business.” — Lisa Kivirist, author of Soil Sisters and Homemade for Sale

 “Whole Farm Management is an indispensable resource. It has just as much value for the beginning farmer learning how to produce a crop at profit as it does for the journeyperson who is already in business, looking to avoid burnout.” — Andrew Mefferd, farmer, author, and editor of Growing for Market

Available through: Powell’s City of Books management-from-start-up-tosustainability- 9781635860740

Indie Bound—Community of Independent Book Stores

Barnes & Noble garry-stephenson/1130405412; jsessionid=6EDF62EFD43E7A5019CA06A99219B9D0.prodnystore01-atgap11?ean=9781635860740#/