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This 76.page manual, in .pdf format, is designed of one manual per young entrepreneur, and there are specific places for the young entrepreneur to write his/her resolutions, activities and findings. The manual is Copyright by the Cook Islands Ministry of Agriculture, February 2009.
The Abstract says:
The basics of agricultural business development are explored in this manual. Focus is placed on farm and business planning and on using money management tools (market appraisal, cost of production, business plans, and cash flow) and on other best business practices. Some attention is given to best practices in crop production. Other “plug-in” publications are used to provide additional information to users.
The slogan of the Young Agricultural Entrepreneur programme is evident throughout the manual: We are passionate about the business of agriculture and proud to be feeding our people!
The manual starts by listing 12 steps to success:
1. Choose to cultivate passion and love for your agricultural business and in producing food that others will love andbe healthy eating.
2. Ask what buyers want to buy from you and how much they are willing to pay for a high quality product – don’t guess.
3. Learn all you can about how you can produce a product well and at least cost. Be a lifelong learner.
4. Know (or make an informed estimate) what it costs to produce a product – even before the first seed is sown. Include a competitive hourly wage for your efforts. Choose a reasonable mark-up and set a competitive price.
5. Deliver a product that meets or exceeds expectations. Ask your buyer how your product or service can be even better the next time.
6. Pay your bills and workers on time, every time. This cultivates your business reputation.
7. Develop a brand identity to differentiate your product from your competitor’s. Be different, be unique, be proud of your professionalism.
8. Stop each month and balance your accounts – don’t guess if you are making money – know it.
9. Save a minimum of 10 percent of your profits from each sale in the bank. Never spend all your profits.
10. Contribute an amount of money to activities that make the world better or that contribute to the wellbeing of your family and community.
11. Keep your eyes and ears open for new opportunities to grow your business and address the wants of customers.
12. Care for yourself and those you love, they are your biggest supporters.
Production, Marketing and Value Chains in the Pacific