Many people think farmers have enviable lives. If you’re a farmer, however you may think otherwise. You work non-stop for very little money.
Though small farmers believe their lives are far from ideal, I can’t think of any farmer who would switch to a life in the city. So how do you get the best of both worlds? How can you maximize profit from your land, small farm or homestead? You don’t have to stop at growing crops. Through diversification and thinking like an entrepreneur, you can achieve a much higher yield from your farm while keeping the lifestyle you love.
Here are some ideas for you to consider for making the most of your small farm. Of course, some of these ideas will be more practical than others depending on your region, type of farm, etc.
1. Grow Medicinal Mushrooms
Growing mushrooms can be very lucrative. However, I recommend that you opt for specialist types of mushrooms if you’re looking into cultivation. There is more money to be made from growing ones for medicinal use or the restaurant market. Depending on the type of mushroom you choose to grow, you could harvest some in just 15 weeks, with a yield of up to 4 lbs. per square foot.
2. Farm Snails for Profit
It is easy to think of snails only as pests, but they can earn you great money. Snail farming (or heliciculture) has been around for many years. In some developing nations, it is becoming an important export crop.
To farm snails, you’ll need to provide them with shelter, plants, and food.This can vary depending on your situation. Some farmers use outdoor pens which are open, others use netting to keep them in. I have also seen them grown commercially in poly tunnels.
3. Raise Tilapia and other kinds of fish
Raising fish such as tilapia can be a very profitable business. For tilapia, you will need to be in an area where the water temperature stays about 20°C (68°F). If your temperature is lower than this, you may need to heat the water which, of course, is costly. The fish will survive in cooler temperatures but the growth rate will be slower.
Depending on the size of fry (young fish) you buy, your harvest could be ready in approximately six months depending on what size you wish to sell your fish at.
4. Raise Worms
Consider raising worms to sell as bait to fishing shops. The worms can be raised in tubs, bins, or barrels and you could be harvesting your crop in just 90 days. But it isn’t just the worms that have value, since the soil left behind is full of worm casings and provides some of the richest sources of nutrients for your garden. This could bring in a secondary income stream as compost for gardens. Not only is it an easy, low-maintenance way of earning more from your farm. It is also completely eco-friendly and as such opens your farm to another type of customer.
With these ideas being implemented, you could be making a lot more money than you are making right now.
We would be looking at other ideas next week. You can make use of this weekend to carefully and thoroughly think what your strengths and weaknesses are, this will help you in deciding which type of ideas you should implement, keeping in mind the financial expense and rewards.