Let's Talk Business
We are transparent in both our operations, methodologies and our beliefs.
We hope that the information below helps any other farmers out there, whether established or just getting started.
If you have any questions or need any further records/clarification/help, please don’t hesitate to get in touch via email.
We are not endorsed by any of the businesses or companies mentioned below.
Accounting - QuickBooks Online | $14.99/month
We link this directly with our accountants at Munros Accountants and Advisors
We do all of our invoicing via Quickbooks, and have linked it to our PayPal to allow for easy payments, as well as easy tracking.
Email Organisation - Sortd | $8/month
Allows us to maintain a somewhat organised shared inbox, ensuring follow-up of important emails.
Field Records - Google Sheets | Free
Please note: some of the below are examples only. For privacy issues (our members’ details are on this spreadsheet), we cannot show you updated working copies of our ‘CSA Planning’.
Crop Records and Planning (Working Copy. R.P. = Roly Poly | S.F. = Seedling Factory (buy-in transplants))
Harvest and Pack List (Working Copy. Hidden sheets are our records from past weeks. We begin a new Excel each year)
CSA Planning (This is only an example, as our working copy contains private details of our members)
Spacing Charts (Our standard bed setup is 4 rows per bed, 30cm between rows, starting 15cm from the bed edge)
Field Organisation/Day Planner - Google Calendar | Free
Each colour is dedicated to a different crew member, allowing all members to be on the same page.
Notekeeping - Evernote | $50/year | Cloud-based
Easy to search; cloud-based system.
Website- Square Space | $300/year
Offers a wide variety of templates, easily modifiable.
Domain - Digital Pacific - $24.90/year
Easy to search; cloud-based system.
Point of Sales Platform- Square Up | 2.75% Processing Fee for cards | Free for cash sales | $59 for the Square Reader
We use Square Up not only to allow our customers to purchase using card, but also as a record-keeping system, as it track how much of each item we sell each week. It also provides information on sales trends; customer trends; and is super easy to use. We configure it with a market-only tablet, which is easier to use when compared to a mobile phone. We charge out items in summer using a small portable solar charger, or in winter using a portable battery pack.
Banking - Bendigo Bank
Aligns with our values, and very easy to deal with.
We use QuickBooks online.
Whilst a lot of small businesses swear by Xero, we found that the cost did not justify the difference; whilst it takes a learning curve, Quickbooks more than meets our needs at a fraction of the cost (you can find some amazing imitation deals - our first year we paid $6/month!).
Book Keeping and accounting takes work, and is a steep learning curve. Our one piece of advice? Get on to it, and get on to it early! We were naive, and decided to save a few bucks, and not invest in QuickBooks software until we started receiving money, rather than expending during set-up phase. We realised too late that the set-up phase is exactly when you want QuickBooks! Receipts stack up (or get shoved in a box, in our case!), and it took us weeks (no exaggeration) of sitting in front of a computer catching up, all whilst trying to keep the farm going! What a nightmare. Get your basics down, and get on to it from the start. We might even go as far as to suggest investing in a book keeper from the on-set, but this all depends on your scale, experience, and viguor!
SOILSMITH - Website
Bruce grew up on a dairy farm so farming is in his blood. He trained in soil microbiology with the Soil Foodweb and soil chemistry and plant nutrition with Neal Kinsey from USA and from that developed the Soilsmith nutrient program. This program has been fine tuned over the past 6 years based on soil and plant response.
Bruce supplied us with a fertiliser calculator of his own design, that doesn’t give a man soil, but teaches a man to soil!
EAL - ANALYTICAL SERVICES, SOUTHERN CROSS UNIVERSITY - Website
EAL provide a thorough analysis of the soil, however they do not include steps forward. They are unique in that they test different phosphorous availabilities , which allows you to understand better what is locked up in soil compared to what is plant available.
Fremantle Packaging Supplies - Website
We use these brown trays for punneting various vegetables, including eggplants, small cauliflower and tomatoes.
Ward Packaging - Website
We use two sizes of these white punnets for various punneting requirements, including peas; beans; tomatoes; and brussel sprouts.
Vegware - website
These containers are used for our freshly cut microgreens. They are made from renewable plant-based materials.
BagCo. - website
We use these biodegradable bags for the majority of our cut-greens. For a while we were providing a boomerang tupperware system, however we found that the extra time spent trying to incorporate this into our system outweighed the small demand we had. It also resulted in wasted product when those few customers did not come to market.