Farm and property management planning
Whole business planning has been widely
promoted within the farming community under headings such
as whole farm planning or
property management planning. These
approaches use several tools to help farmers define their
forestry-related goals and personal performance criteria.
Mapping the farming enterprise using aerial
photographs is useful because it can help identify areas where
trees or forest management may be able to contribute to overall
farm goals. Areas considered unsuitable for agricultural production
might be identified on the map and be an important first step
in designing farm forestry options. Similarly, the boundaries
between different land classes based on soil types, slope,
aspect or other features, may be ideal locations for belts
of trees for shelter and land protection.
Some whole-of-business planning approaches look at all aspects
of the farming enterprise, including such issues as succession
planning. They might also identify opportunities for farm
forestry to contribute to, and complement, existing enterprises.
For example, younger family members may identify the opportunity
to establish and manage a forest for timber production on
part of the family farm, while studying or working elsewhere.
They could work the forest on their visits home and claim
a tax deduction against their off-farm income. By the time
they consider settling down they might already be close to
their first harvest.
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