Potatoes are pivotal to food security in the world. They are the 4th most starch-rich crop in the world. They sit at number 3 on the list of the top food crops in the world. To over 1 billion people in the world, potatoes are literally a staple food. Potatoes are globally regarded as a cash crop. As an important food crop, potatoes must be cultivated from a place of knowledge. Potato farming business has lucrative returns. Many people are making money all over the world by farming potatoes. However, to build a successful, sustainable potato farming business, you require sufficient knowledge of how to efficiently grow the potatoes, good business management skills, and a good potato farming business plan. This article will outline how to start the potato farming business, and the potato farming business plan – PDF, Word and Excel.
There are some essential things decisions that you need to make before you venture into the potato farming business. You have to make a decision on how many hectares you want to farm, which type of potatoes you will farm, which season you are going to plant your potatoes, and your target market.. These choices will be affected by the amount of capital you have, and the needs of your target market. If you do not have a lot of capital, you can always start small and grow your potato farming business overtime. You also need to carry out market research (Who are you going to sell the potatoes to? At what price?) and write a potato business plan before you venture into the business.
Land for Potato Farming Business
Good potato production starts with good land selection. Potatoes can be grown in a variety of soil types, however alkaline soils and saline soils are not a good fit for potato farming. The land should also have the right soil structure. A good structure allows good water infiltration into the soil and water drainage through the soil, exchange of gases in and out of the soil, and optimal root development. Loose soils are good for potato farming business because they offer the least resistance to enlargement of the tubers. The most suitable soil types are loamy and sandy loam soils that are rich in organic matter, with good drainage and aeration. Another factor to consider is the pH of the soil, as it should be ideally in the range of 5.2-6.4 to enable the optimum growth of the potatoes. You will encounter problems with common scab if you plant potatoes in soils with high pH. If your farm your potatoes in soils with lower pH than the recommended range, the potatoes will produce poor quality tubers and will have abnormal growth. Thus before you start farming potatoes on your farm its essential that you check whether the soil is suitable for potato farming. Potato farming also involves extensive ground preparation. The soil needs to be harrowed until completely free of weed roots. Your business plan for potato production should take into account the cost of purchasing or renting the land.
Machinery and Equipment
Machinery and equipment which are required for your potato farming business will depend on the scale of your operations. Machinery and equipment needed include tractors, harvesters, boom sprayers, fertilizer spreader equipment, irrigation equipment, spray equipment, diggers, scales, ridgers, bins etc. Most farmers usually hire big machinery like tractors when they want to use them, rather than purchasing them as they are expensive. There may also be need of grid hydroelectricity energy for the irrigation systems, standby diesel generators for use during power outages, or solar powered irrigation systems. Farmers especially in the rural areas who do not have the modern farming equipment use animal drawn equipment in potato farming. The higher the level of mechanization at your potato farm, the higher the efficiency of your operations, and the profitability of your potato farming business. The potato farming business plan should include the costs of acquiring and hiring the various machinery and equipment.
Potato seeds are the most important input in the potato farming business. There are many varieties of potato cultivars which are used in different parts of the world. The potato cultivars differ in colour, shape, yield, texture and time to maturity. Your choice of which potato cultivar to use in your potato farming business will be determined by availability of the seeds, the yield of the seeds, the resistance to diseases of the potato seeds, and your target market. It is important that you purchase your potato seeds from certified potato seed suppliers. If you buy poor quality potato seeds, your potatoes will not grow to their full potential and you will have poor yields. Potatoes take 14-20 weeks to mature depending on their type. The cost of acquiring potato seeds should be included in your potato business plan. Potatoes are grown from seed potatoes; these are young tubers. Potatoes can also be grown from seed pieces i.e. parts of other potatoes.
Intended Use, Climatic And Soil Conditions Determine Choice Of Potato Variety
You should consider the climate of where you intend to propagate them. You also have to consider the soil profile. For instance there are potato varieties that prefer generally wet conditions and clay soil. Then there are potato varieties that are best suited for dry conditions and sandy soils. Then the intended use matters. For example, there are potato varieties that are well suited for the fresh market. There are varieties that are ideal for keeping for extended periods of time. There are also atypical (often called specialty) potato varieties e.g. potatoes with non-conventional colours.
Certified And Damage-Free Potato Seeds Are Imperative
Source your potato seed from reputable sources. The thrust here is to get potato seeds that are certified. Certified potato seeds are usually fast-growing and produce substantial yields. The potatoes are more likely to have higher market than from non-certified ones. Check to see whether or not the potato seed has physical damages. Age-wise you need young or middle-aged seed; they come with a high likelihood of good yields. Good potato seeds must have considerable and healthy sprouts.
Farming inputs required for potato farming business include herbicides, for effective weed control at your farm. Pesticides and fungicides are required for protecting your potato plants against insects and fungi. Fertilizers are required to support the efficient growth of your potatoes, by providing all the nutrients needed by potatoes to grow to their full potential. The costs of acquiring all these inputs should be included in your potato farming business plan.
Pest And Disease Management
Good Agronomical Practices
Incorporate an integrated pest management regiment when carrying out potato farming business. Strict adhere to good agronomical practices is key to this. Examples of these are choosing the right potato variety; particularly those with pest or disease resistance. Good seed selection, choosing the right soil type, the right climate, and so forth are essential too. Practising crop rotation also plays a huge role. Regular weeding and an insistence on hygiene contribute here. For example, ensuring soil does not splash and settle on potato leaves is an insistence on hygiene.
Biological Pest Management And Control
For starters you can provide physical barriers against pests e.g. mulch and nets. You can also promote the proliferation of insects or animals that feed off pests. For example, beetles feed off of most surface insect pests. You can also plant vegetation or crops nearby that harbour such insects or animals. Alternatively, you can just find ways to bring them into the mix. Another possible approach is to physically kill or ward off pests. The aim is to exhaust all biological options of potato farming pest management before jumping onto chemical methods.
Disease Control – A Function Of 3 Factors You Must Manage
There are 3 major types of potato diseases namely, bacterial, fungal, and viral. Fungal diseases are best prevented because once they show up, getting rid of them is a tall order.
Physical damage to your potato crops makes the vulnerable. Thus you must ensure that your potato crops are free from damage. You must also remove any damaged crops as they can ignite disease outbreaks. Bacterial and viral diseases often stem from damaged or infected potato tubers. This calls on you to regularly inspect your potato crops, daily at best.
Presence Of Pathogens
Diseases can break out due to pathogens being around. Pests are one of the culprits which are why they must be dealt with. Having dirt around or poor agronomical practices can create room for pathogens. Again, inspection of potatoes is pivotal in spotting the presence of pathogens.
Pathogens prefer certain environments for them to grow and multiply. For example, water logging on your potato farm can create an enabling environment for pathogens. Poor aeration can create generally warmer temperatures which can promote pathogens as well. Always check for any indication of an enabling environment for pathogens on the potato farm.
When doing potato farming business, you will need to hire part time farm workers as and when necessary. The duties which they will do include line marking; sprouting; ploughing; planting; grading and packing; reredging; top dressing; discing ; herbiciding and pesticiding. The part time farm workers will be paid according to the number of days worked. You also require supervisors, farm manager, finance & accounting staff, and logistics staff depending on the scale of your potato farming business. The wages and salaries of your workers should be included in your potato farming business plan.
Harvesting And Storage Of Potatoes
Potatoes take on average 90 or more days to mature depending on the variety. Though harvesting can start as early as at 60 days for young potatoes. Potatoes harvested much later are the mature or storage potatoes. Flowering and foliage yellowing (eventually dying or falling off) is the major indicator of readiness for harvesting. Potato harvesting must be done under dry and warm conditions. This pertains to the soil and weather. Forks are often used to dig potatoes out when harvesting.
The elementary way to store potatoes is to delay harvesting them. Once harvested, the ideal general storage environment for potatoes must be moderately humid and dark. The temperature should be between 15ºC and 21ºC. If you intend to store your potatoes for much longer you need more humidity and temperature to be around 5ºC. You can keep them in netty sacks or dull paper bags. Care must be taken to initially exclude and regularly check for damaged or infected potatoes.
Capital for Potato Farming Business
The amount of capital required for potato farming business depends on the scale of the project. You can get a loan from the bank, or funding from investors, to use as capital to start your potato farming business. If you plan to raise capital from investors and a loan from the bank, you need a good potato farming business plan. If you don’t have access to investors and bank loan, you can use your personal savings and start small, and grow your business overtime. Potato farming is very profitable, so if you reinvest the profits you get, you can quickly grow. Even if you are not planning to get a loan, you should still get a potato farming business plan to guide you in starting and operating the business. It is essential for you to have a potato farming business plan before you venture into the potato farming business, so that you know all the costs involved and you make an informed decision.
Take advantage of strategic events or locations such as farmers markets. Also use the internet and social media to market your potatoes. Differentiate your potato produce by diversifying your packaging. Using netted sacks is cost-effective, is breathable and allows customers to inspect. You can even propagate several potato varieties to diversify your range. You can also diversify based on size or age (e.g. young or mature). Be creative with your display space or spot when selling potatoes to attract customers. Consider adding value-added potato products to your product range e.g. fries. This can draw more customers.
The market for potatoes is very huge and is ever increasing. The annual global demand of potatoes is 400 million tonnes. That’s a lot! You can supply your potatoes to individual households, schools, restaurants, hotels, companies, supermarkets, organizations, events etc. The potato business plan ought to include a proper marketing plan to use in your potato farming business.
Advantages Of Potato Farming Business
Potatoes are generally easy to propagate and do not always require much growing space. They are nutrient-rich which is why they are sought-after. That is also coupled with their economic value. This makes it usually easier to get funding or support plus there is a huge market for them. With the right conditions they can be stored for months thus guaranteeing food security. Potatoes have countless value-added products that can be made from them.
To increase and guarantee your chances of success in potato farming business you must consult experts whenever in doubt. Potato farming is so popular globally that you are never too far from relevant experts. The garbage in, garbage out (GIGO) principle is key in potato farming. Be meticulous in your choice and application of all the necessary inputs. For instance, poor seed selection can ruin everything else.
Pre-Written Potato Farming Business Plan (PDF, Word And Excel): Comprehensive Version, Short Funding/Bank Loan Version and Automated Financial Statements
For an in-depth analysis of the potato farming business, we encourage you to purchase our well-researched and comprehensive potato farming business plan. We introduced the business plans after discovering that many were venturing into the potato production business without enough knowledge and understanding of how to run the potato farming business, how to farm the potatoes, lack of understanding of the financial side of the business, lack of understanding of : the industry, the risks involved , costs and profitability of the business; which often leads to disastrous losses.
The StartupBiz Global potato farming business plan will make it easier for you to launch and run your potato farming business successfully, fully knowing what you are going into, and what’s needed to succeed in the business. It will be easier to plan and budget as you will be aware of all the costs involved in setting up and running the potato business.
Uses of the Potato Farming Business Plan (PDF, Word And Excel)
The potato business plan can be used for many purposes including:
- Raising capital from investors/friends/relatives
- Applying for a bank loan
- Start-up guide to launch your potato farming business
- As a potato farming business proposal
- Assessing profitability of the potato farming business
- Finding a business partner
- Assessing the initial start-up costs so that you know how much to save
- Manual for current business owners to help in business and strategy formulation
Contents of the Potato Business Plan (PDF, Word And Excel)
The potato business plan include, but not limited to:
- Marketing Strategy
- Financial Statements (monthly cash flow projections, income statements, cash flow statements, balance sheets, break even analysis, payback period analysis, start-up costs, financial graphs, revenue and expenses, Bank Loan Amortization)
- Risk Analysis
- Industry Analysis
- Market Analysis
- SWOT & PEST Analysis
- Operational Requirements (Including technical aspects of how to farm the potatoes, fertilizer requirements etc)
- Operational Strategy
- Why some people in potato farming business fail, so that you can avoid their mistakes
- Ways to raise capital to start your potato farming business
The Pre-written potato farming business plan package consist of 4 files
- Potato Farming Business Plan – PDF file (Comprehensive Version – 87 Pages)
- Potato Farming Business Plan – Editable Word File (Comprehensive Version – 87 Pages)
- Potato Farming Business Plan Funding/Bank Loan Version- Editable Word File (Short version for applying for a loan/funding – 41 pages)
- Potato Farming Business Plan Automated Financial Statements – (Editable Excel File)
The business plan can be used in any country and can be easily edited. The financial statements are automated. This implies that you can change eg the number of hectares, selling price of the potatoes etc, and all the other financial statements will automatically adjust to reflect the change.
Click below to download the Contents Page of the Potato Farming Business Plan (PDF)
Get the Potato Farming Business Plan (PDF, Word And Excel)
Click Buy Now below to purchase using Paypal, Credit Card, or Debit Card. After you have purchased, you will immediately see the download link for the business plan package on the screen. You will also immediately get an email with the business plan download link.
The Pre-written business plan package (PDF, Word, and Excel) costs $30 only!
If you want to purchase multiple business plans at once then click here: Business Plans Store.
The business plan package is a zipped compressed file containing the PDF, Word and Excel documents. To open the package after downloading it, just right click, and select Extract All. If you have any problems in downloading and opening the files, email us on email@example.com and we will assist you.
We wish you the best in your potato farming business! Check out our collection of business plans , and more business ideas.