The latest and ever-increasing trend of organic farming has urged farmers to prepare themselves or at least identify the basic skill set that is required to be a successful organic farmer. Usually people with the following qualities tend to qualify as an organic farmer.
Though opinions may vary but if you want to opt for it as a career you’ve got to really consider them. However, there is no hard and fast rule that these attributes are a ‘must-have’ in your personality for you to be a farmer, but nonetheless it always provides your insight into what areas you could particularly work on.
1. Health is wealth
A farmer needs to be in his best health to do justice to his job because it is quite a demanding feat to accomplish as it needs a lot of muscular effort and tensile strength. It is a true test of patience as farmers spend long tedious hours in the field either standing, pulling or spending never-ending hours travelling in tractors and carrying out laborious tasks. Even if automation has taken over, human involvement is still there to a great extent.
2. You need to be an organic advocate
Organic farming has a lot more to it than eliminating the use of chemicals, fertilizers and artificial growth boosters for that matter. It requires commitment, knowledge and experience.
You really need to know your way around your farm, the crops your land can grow, how to manage the growth of plants, maintain health of your livestock, and prevent pests from ruining your hard work.
But perhaps one of the biggest reasons you need to truly commit yourself to the “organic” way is so you can sell yourself better. Unfortunately not many people understand this concept, so extra effort is required on the part of the farmer to engage, discuss, and convince people of its benefits against conventional farming methods.
3. Know your soil
Your soil type dictates the kinds of crops you can grow. Unless you know exactly what kind of soil you’re dealing with, you won’t be able to create a crop rotation throughout the year that is fully optimized according to your business plan.
Complete knowledge of your soil will also help you battle its downsides, and assist you in coming up with clever workarounds for all the natural threats it may be exposed to. As you gain more knowledge, you’ll know exactly what systems you’ll need to put in place in order to make the rotation of crops seamless, and with minimum damage to the soil, and the crops.
4. Know your equipment
You’ll need more than just your hands and intellect to guide you through organic agriculture. You’ll require equipment like tractors and other machinery that’s reliable and won’t halt production unexpectedly. On top of that, you need ample skills with these machines in order to do quick on-site repairing if need be, as basic maintenance saves lives and property.
But first off, you need cost effective channels to buy your machinery from. Lately a bunch of online sellers have emerged that are providing economical ways for upcoming and professional farmers to connect and buy key farming equipment and heavy machinery online.
5. Have a business plan
Of course no professional endeavor will ever survive or gain any real traction if there isn’t a business plan in place. Gone are the old days of farming where challenges were tackled as they came up. Today, farmers need to be ready for any and all threats or opportunities that exist in their market.
This means laying out a foundation in writing for all asset management, human resource, marketing, finance, operations and even risk management. This detailed document will not only serve as a personal road map for the farmer to follow, but can also reel in investors to help finance your projects.