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Thread: Business Plans

  1. #21
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    May 2005
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    chilliwack, bc
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    well, i've written my business plan up about 3 times now and about to do it again. I've been accepted into a self employment program where they require you to do market research, competitive analysis, SWOT, ect,ect. so the question is what area you'd like to do? you'll be producing honey but besides that you could sell bulk bees, package bees, nucs, queens, propolis, wax, pollen, and/or pollination services or any combination of the above. estimat how much money you'll make in what your doing and estimate how much you'll spend on expences and if your in the plus side it'll be possible to run that business but if your in the negative then consider it an expensive hobby. but for starting a businees in beekeeping and still increasing the hive number(which is what i'm doing right now and for the next couple years) don't count on any serious income as it will be consumed by the expences of increaseing.
    Will Gruenwald Chilliwack BC

  2. #22
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    de man chillard sezs:
    don't count on any serious income as it will be consumed by the expences of increaseing.

    tecumseh thinking out loud sezs:
    this is called NURTURING a business. would you consider nurturing a child on the bases of how much profit they generated?

    sage advice none the less chillard

  3. #23
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    Jan 2003
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    Manitoba Canada
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    >>don't count on any serious income as it will be consumed by the expences of increaseing.

    >>tecumseh thinking out loud sezs:
    this is called NURTURING a business


    tecumseh, chillard basically said that.

    Even though there is little spending money left at the end of the year, we have to recognize the increase in net worth over the year. Sometimes it feels like we are working for nothing, but on paper we can prove we are richer in equity.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  4. #24
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    Jan 2006
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    Osceola, Iowa south central of state
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    It is hard to understand how people can get so carried away with a persons original question. All the guy was asking was if anyone had semething to share about a plan for his bees. Now people are discussing HR block and whether you make money with bees. Well, I don't think the guy is being helped at all with his quesiton.

    Wish I knew how to help, but I am not that good with buisness plans myself, in fact I need one for me bees!! But I guess it better to go elsewhere with the question.

  5. #25
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    Mar 2006
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    Kitts Hill, Ohio
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    Greetings junglebill007:

    We can fail to plan, but no one plans to fail. (Unknown, but sure wish it was me.)

    For tax purposes, a business plan begins as very simple five year plan. Written evidence is required if one plans to treat beekeeping as a "business" for tax purposes. (One shouldn't be a not-for-profit business, even if that is the after-tax reality [img]smile.gif[/img]

    A serious business plan takes less than one hour to write. Make it more detailed as you update annually, ie., executive summary, etc.

    Anyway, start with: Where do you wish the business to be next year? What are the anticipated expenses for year number two growth? Prioritize by the “must have,” “should have,” “like to have:” ie., purchase two complete supers; hire six employees, etc. What is/are your funding source(s)? Will you re-invest the beekeeping profit; take a personal loan from your other income sources, (yes, you are loaning the “business” money), etc.

    Then three years, etc, project up to five years.

    Proof by your own critical analysis: Are your expectations reasonable?

    Forum lurking, first time posting larvae,
    Joseph Benning

  6. #26
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    Feb 2006
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    Bill has a good point. I found the bantering somewhat comical, but as a new beekeeper who plans on yearly expansion I too am very interested in a business plan template for Apiary Operations if one is available.

    "Anyone out there willing to share a business plan for Apiary Operations (Beekeeping in General)?"
    To everything there is a season....

  7. #27
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    mike sezs:
    Bill has a good point.

    tecumseh suggest:
    read junglebill's second post.

    bill gillmore seems to have painted a pretty good picture. I would suggest that business plan means many things to many folks. it would seem to tecumseh that it basically should define some basic goals (honey, pollen or live bees as the primary focus of the business to start;grow to increase/buy to increase;etc) plus if you were using this information to acquire resources some elaboration on a income/expense stream (cash flow analysis) over some extended time period.

    but like I said earlier, h&r block sounds to be covering their behinds. the fact that it is becoming increasingly well know that a greater number of folks and businesses are dodging income tax obligation may well be motivating h&r blocks action.

  8. #28
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    May 2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
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    For my own, not yet written, business plan, I'm basically just thinking out the next 2 years, including this one. Its small in scale. I don't know enough to go beyond that, and more importantly, I won't have enough time to expand beyond that if I continue working a 40hr work week which is %98 likely.

    As a start, I've given myself some requirements:

    1. No debt will be incurred, and expenses can't severly limit other activites.

    2. Bees will be raised internally to reduce introduced disease, expense, and to learn how to rapidly increase colony numbers.

    3. At the end of 2-3 years, I will be able to sell back down to 6-10 hives, at a profit, if I desire. No major equipment such as extracting and processing equipment will be purchased so that if I decide to back down, there will not be significant, non-hive equipment to dump.

    Also see the thread "Business plans, a good thing"

    Bill says, "Well, I don't think the guy is being helped at all with his quesiton."
    Ah, yes, how many multi-page, flaming folder, "shootn' the breeze" type threads have been started by a simple, usually one sentence, question that never gets answered? Hope this helps some!

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Waynesville, NC
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    Wow....

    After my second post, I stopped looking for anything here!

    I always try to learn something from day to day experiences, so...I'll be more careful (specific) in future posts.

    I currently have only one hive that is nearly ready to split. I have at least one in a trap (medium box) I will collect in a few days.

    In filling out my taxes, small talk lead to the topic of bees. I told the H&R Block guy beekeeping was just a hobby but maybe someday I could make some cash. He was very clear that proceeds from a hobby were not taxable, I asked where does the IRS figure the line is between hobby and busines. He said "It depends" (sound familiar?) and gave me some materials about the IRS take on hobbies vs Business.

    Now, after having been the the USAF for 20 years, I am a "planner" . I just figure it's better to have plans, both tactical (short range) as well as strategic for NEARLY everything I do. Anyway, the whole business thing was just a first look into considering strategic goals.

    Sorry to have caused a ruckus.

    On the other hand, I did find very useful information concerning Beekeeping Business Plans when I searched the forum for previous discussions.

    Thanks for all the heartfelt input/replies. Hope everyone has a great season this year!
    Regards from Western NC!

  10. #30
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    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
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    >>No major equipment such as extracting and processing equipment

    A beekeeper has told me that a hive that doesnt produce a little honey doenst winter well.


    >>After my second post, I stopped looking for anything here!
    >>did find very useful information concerning Beekeeping Business Plans when I searched the forum for previous discussions.

    I mean, what do you really expect when participating in a fourm.

    You tell me if you ever strayed point when participating in a round table disscussion,?
    Why do you expect anything else here?
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  11. #31
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    Feb 2006
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    Ian,

    Take a deep breath of cool Canadian air, and chill.
    To everything there is a season....

  12. #32
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    May 2005
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    Colorado
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    I'm cool. I'm cool. But I guess I should answer. Let's put you in charge of Hank and Rebecca's fictitious tax return company. Call it H&R Hawk. As the preparer, you can be subpoenaed into court and into tax audits. You don't receive any money for that time you spend there.

    Also if you have a doubt on a deduction you want to err on the side of the IRS so you don't make anything that can be called a "mistake".

    For both of these reasons your customers will get more money back by learning to do their own taxes. There is another reason. It's un-American. If we all did our own taxes, we'd force our congress to give us a reasonable tax law. The way things are now only the tax experts have to learn the law so we let them ---- us.

    I agree with Mr. Bennings definition of what to put in a business plan. I would only add the more specific you can be, the more chance you have of having it accepted in a dispute. The reason they're disputed is that once you have a business, almost any business, suddenly all your meals, entertainment, vacations, etc. are business deductions.

    This is not a tax dodge. If I ask a waitress in Denny's in Fresno, Calif. how she feels about a neighbor keeping bees, well and is it different if he gives you some honey now and then, that's why the entire trip can be considered a business expense. The IRS wants you to keep trying to grow your business that way.

    A better example: What if Joel's tincture of Propolis becomes the world standard for treating strep throat. That's what business is all about. And yes, it's possible. So there's nothing immoral about taking the deductions Congress wrote into the tax laws.

    One disagreement I noted: You can run a not for profit bee business. But you'll have to get a license from your States Secretary of State. Anyone do this?? Name yourself trustee with a huge salary?

    Better quit now.

    Hawk
    KC0YXI

  13. #33
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    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
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    1) Agree with Idee, suggesting someone with one hive cross over into business, especially bee business is the height of ridiculous! That in itself would have sent me running from the Block office. Tax preparers should stick to tax preparing!

    2) My dad always said plan your work and work your plan. It's done well for me. It takes me alot more than an hour to do my business plan. A plan should include yearly goals for stock maintainence + increase, equipment stock and needs, a marketing plan, a quarterly financial projection and an operational plan including who's doing what and when in the plan. This business has many many time consuming facets. Keep your plan in a notebook and close at hand so you can review it frequently. Realize it is a road map that will have many side trips and route changes. I hear people talk about getting to 100 hives or more. It becomes suddenly clear when your business plan makes you realize that's a $30,000 investment in an industry with huge risks and a volatile product market. (like almost all farming)

    3) Like Michael I do my own taxes. It has really made me understand my business better and be a better fiscal manager. The 1st. year was a challenge, especially depreciating equipment. Since then it is just a matter of spending some time on the IRS site and finding whats new. If I was going to pay someone to do my taxes it would not be anyone from H&R Block or any similar operators. If I'm paying to have it done I want someone who has more than a 6 week education in the field. No possible way anyone can scratch the IRS surface in a short course. I'm sure they do quite well on individual taxes.

    4) Mike, Ian's not stressing, he's just very spirited, some of us like him that way. It's part of what makes Ian, Ian!

  14. #34
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    Jul 2005
    Location
    Waynesville, NC
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    One more thing, if I may

    When I said "After my second post, I stopped looking for anything here!" I meant I had withdrawn the question and hadn't checked back on the thread...it had already been answered during previous posts. My bad, I didn't check for the info by doing the forum search FIRST.

    Ian, in regard to my expectations in a forum discussion...I definately would expect a free exchange of information, ideas, and opinions. I would also expect that the discussion may wander from the initial matter. I think it's not unreasonable to also expect folks to read a post before responding to it. Asking for clarification before making inflamitory remarks is also something I would expect from a group of adults in any discussion. Keeps things from getting messy.

    This (Beesource) is a great learning and sharing tool, lets not reduce it something resembling recess in middle school.
    Regards from Western NC!

  15. #35
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    Feb 2003
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    lewisberry, Pa, usa
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    I always loved recess in middle school.....

  16. #36
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    Mar 2005
    Location
    Central Wisconsin
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    You can get some really good business plan help and even a free counselor (email or local) at Score. Used to be called the Service Core of Retired Executives. Everyone should be at least familiar with this website so please check it out.

    http://www.score.org/
    Buy locally, buy only humanely raised animals, eat in season, keep bees!

  17. #37
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
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    Junglebill,

    This may give yo some ideas. Take a look.

    www.farmcentre.com/english/downloads/pdf/beekeeperplan.pdf
    To everything there is a season....

  18. #38
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    May 2005
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    Knoxville, TN
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    I said
    >>>No major equipment such as extracting and processing equipment

    reply
    >>A beekeeper has told me that a hive that doesnt produce a little honey doenst winter well.

    Hugh????????

    What I mean is, there is no use investing $1000s in processing equipment when other people have the equipment you can use once, possibly twice a year for a relatively small fee. Only when you are commited to a certain level of beekeeping for long term would I want to invest in the processing equipment that will loose value as soon as I pay shipping. A hive is a different matter, as once you put bees and comb in it, it has increased in value so there is a potential to earn a profit on it if you need to sell it in a few years.

    I'm planning to use a club owned extractor this year. Local processing facilities are avaliable. And Tennessee is kicking around the idea of buying mobile processing units for public use. There are more options than buying everything needed to extract your honey and use it once or twice a year then collect dust with it.

    Junglebill says,
    >>Sorry to have caused a ruckus.

    no problem, no ruckus, just normal activity
    I wanted to talk about business plans anyway and listen to what others had to say about it so you just opened the door for conversation, thats the way most threads go it seems.

  19. #39
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    New Albany, Ohio
    Posts
    350

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    Both the ABJ and Bee Culture ran articles on doing your taxes and related info in their last issues...

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