Financial Basics

Land, Activities & People: Business Structures and Accounting/Tax Basics for Livestock and Meat producers

A 2-Part Foundational Series on Business Structure and Accounting for Ranch Businesses. Part 1 provides a framework for understanding the essential components of any farm or ranch business including business models, legal entities and the relationship between people and activities. Part 2 reviews the role of an accounting system, and finding efficient ways to meet all of your needs without creating unnecessary complexity.

Cost of Production & Financial Basics overview

How to estimate costs of production per unit for your operation, setting the stage to translate those numbers into meaningful reasoning for sales pricing and marketing decisions. We review  reading income statements (P&L), understanding cost of production, or COGS (cost of goods sold) and what goes into them, and how to classify other expenses, in relation to income and resulting gross and net profit.

Cost of Production: grassfed beef calculator instructional

Educator Rod Ofte introduces the Wallace Center Pasture Project’s Grassfed Beef Calculator, a tool to determine an accurate cost of production on a per head and per herd basis across multiple seasons and within various animal classes: cow-calf, finishing, breeding, stocking, growing your own supplemental forage, direct marketed meat, or a combination of some or all of these programs.

Managing Cash Gracefully: holistic budgeting, cash flow and breakeven projections

This 2-part course will walk through the necessities and complexities of managing your cash flow with an easy .xls template. Learn to manage your income, expenses, debt, equity, and returns with a holistic vision of the whole business alongside learning methods for enterprise analysis.

Yield & Margin Calculator (beef, pork, lamb/goat)

The Yield & Margin Calculator Instructional is an in-depth look at calculating yield post-processing, from live weight through cut-out decisions, how best to keep track of harvest numbers in order to create your own ranch benchmarks and standards over time, and how to determine best prices and margins across multiple revenue channels.

Tax Accounting Basics

Tax Accounting Options and Methods for Meat and Livestock Operations

Business educator Poppy Davis demystifies the basic requirements and methods for livestock and meat tax accounting. This 2-part course is perfect for anyone running a livestock or meat operation, for professionals who support livestock and meat producers, and anyone with a curiosity about tax accounting methods for producers.

Tax Accounting Basics, Part I: Introduction to Options and Requirements for Livestock and Meat Tax Accounting

Tax Accounting Basics, Part II: Choosing the Right Tax Accounting Methods for Your Livestock and Meat Operations


Sales & Marketing

Communications Strategy and Collective Brand Identity

Relevant to businesses every stage of development, this webinar helps ground your marketing efforts in foundational communications thinking and teaches the importance of crafting a marketing plan. Our approach is grounded in thoughtful strategic planning so that money spent on promotion is always reflective of your overall core values and business identity.

Sales Strategy

We cover the quantitative and qualitative elements of choosing and maintaining a mixed sales channel strategy for your business with revenue coming from various types of customers (retail/wholesale, food service, direct consumer, etc.). We discuss how to target varied customer groups through different channels, choose your channels wisely, and investigate pricing, margin, and overall potential profit via a holistic approach to evaluating sales channels.

Best Practices for Marketing I : Direct To Consumer

We review the how-to’s and pros and cons for the direct-to-consumer markets; balancing a mixed revenue channel approach to sales; various sales and marketing options including whole and half animals versus selling cuts, farmers markets, online sales, and CSA models. This course is appropriate for those already selling meat directly into the consumer market, large plant, wholesaler, as well as strictly livestock producers who do not sell yet but are considering direct marketing meat.

Best Practices for Marketing II: Wholesale in the time of COVID

A complement to our Direct to Consumer Marketing Options course, this course looks at the wholesale sales opportunities and offers a how-to for managing channels alongside an honest panel discussion between multiple buyers (online branded program, retail grocery, butcher shop, and restaurant) of how ranchers AND wholesale buyers have had to pivot in COVID times to keep wholesale sales channels healthy, functional elements of their operations.

Processing, Operations & Butchery

Supply Chain Primer

A 2-part, in-depth introduction to the basics and exploration of the middle supply chain elements of a grassfed meat business: everything that happens from the moment of harvest until it leaves your hands as a sellable product. We cover calculating yield during butchery and processing, creating a supportive processor relationship, inventory and production management tactics, certifications and labeling basics, and more. This course was created in conjunction with the Quivira Coalition’s Regenerate Conference.

Beef butchery demo, yield analysis, taste and flavor profiling

In this all-day in-person learning experience, we used a butchery demo to guide producers through meaningful knowledge about variations in carcass breakdown, cutout, and options for cut choices that maximize full carcass utilization. We reviewed yield calculations and profit analysis, flavor profiling and taste, and the powerful Restaurant/Chef and Rancher connection. This all-day course was organized in conjunction with the Good Meat Project.

Inventory basics

Inventory Basics for Meat and Livestock Operations

Learn the “whys, whats, hows”, and “now whats” of managing inventory, with a specific emphasis on time- and money-constrained small businesses. They will help connect the dots with how your inventory systems intersect with your accounting methods and review physical systems for fresh and frozen inventory, and potential solutions — everything from clipboards to external customized software systems — and dive into understanding your necessary level of complexity.
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