- 18 September 2012
Charlie Kilpatrick, Senior Business Technologist and Teresa Maguire, Horticulture Technologist, discuss ornamental crop growing costs at the Horticulture Development Centre, Greenmount Campus
This year, the College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE) is celebrating the centenary of its Greenmount Campus, near Antrim. To mark this historic anniversary, the College is running a series of tailored industry events throughout the year, in support of agri-food businesses. On Wednesday 19 September 2012, a one day event for all sectors of the local commercial and amenity horticulture sectors will be held at Greenmount Campus under the title of ‘Horticulture 2012’. This event will include a programme of seminars, a trade exhibition, tours of horticulture facilities and grounds at Greenmount Campus and demonstrations.
Business Management Principles
The current economic climate of inflating input costs and turbulent markets has re-emphasised the need for prudent business management practice, not least efficient financial planning and budgetary control across the amenity and commercial horticulture sectors. The principles of business management applied to these sectors are no different from any other type of business and this is an area that progressive horticulture businesses need to focus on in order to succeed. Reflecting this need, business management will be one of the themes for the programme of seminars at ‘Horticulture 2012’.
Whilst we are all familiar with the different types of trading vehicles such as Sole Trader, Partnerships, Limited Company but we may not know the advantages and disadvantages of the various options. The Inland Revenue also has a series of Capital allowance measures for tax purposes. In order to address these basic taxation issues, Anne Douglas, Senior Manager, Cavanagh Kelly Chartered Accountants will deliver a seminar on taxation.
Planning and Control
An important area of business management involves planning and control of finances not least the establishment of financial and physical parameters needed to measure and compare performance. Charlie Kilpatrick, Senior Business Technologist at CAFRE, will deliver a seminar on basic business planning that will focus on the development of a business plan to establish current business performance and identify areas for improvement.
A horticulture business, like any other business, must grow in order to survive in the long term. In general output prices do not keep pace with inflation and thus in real terms they fall. If a business has been examined and profit from the existing assets cannot be further improved, expansion should be considered. In most cases the money is borrowed and the business must generate a sustainable farm surplus after the new loan repayments to meet private drawings and taxation. Some assessment of risk analysis must also be built into any calculations. In order to inform visitors attending the event on finance related matters Rosemary Peters Gallagher, Partner, Moore Stephens Chartered Accountants, will deliver a seminar on sources of finance for developing businesses.