Money is not just money though. Many considerations at play. Technology and digital progress will also influence capital markets including how banks might adjust to meet market demands.
In ‘Funding our Future’ we have tried not just to highlight the investment gap but suggest practical ways our farmers can make themselves investment ready and find pathways to future success and growth.
Some of the immediate and next steps to be taken are ones designed to generate greater production volumes and returns for our farmers.
Best practice models – including the adoption of innovative and new structures for owning and operating farms – can improve business performance and output. Moving towards best practice also aids in attracting investment and increasing farm productivity. Business health and performance is a logical attraction for any form of capital.
Australian agriculture is typified as a family farm, handed down through generations. It’s not surprising therefore to learn nine out of 10 farms are owned by families. And generally speaking, there is the notion the farm must be solely owned by that family.
However, in reality a number of models exist for farming and could be brought into the mix – with many generating efficiencies, profitability, and up-skilling. There is a matter of mindset at play here around complete farm ownership and operational control.
Alternative farming structures include joint ventures, shared farming arrangements, equity partnerships, offtake structures, or even fund managers, corporate sector funding or cooperatives.
These structures also require a greater level of sophistication when it comes to managing the farm, leading to greater professionalism, increased financial reporting, greater accountability and long-term business planning.