What information can you give me on budgeting and marketing for a medicinal herb enterprise?
F.M.ArkansasAnswer: Thank you for requesting information from ATTRA on enterprise budget and business planning template for mixed medicinal herb production, and information on how to locate buyers for medicinal herbs, as well as organic seed for herbs.Enterprise budgets/business planning templates for mix medicinal herb productionRefer to two publications prepared by ATTRA marketing and risk management Specialists that provide useful resources: Agricultural Business Planning Templates and Resources Enterprise Budgets and Production Costs for Organic ProductionThese can be viewed on-line, with live links. Also see the planning template and enterprise budget for mixed herb production, published by the British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture, Food, & Fisheries. (See Resources)How to locate buyers and organic seed for herbsOrganic seed suppliersATTRA has compiled a list of suppliers of organic seed, many of whom can provide herb seed. (http://www.attra.ncat.org/attra-pub/altseed_search.php)I suggest contacting Horizon Herbs, Seeds of Change, and One-Garden, Inc. (formerly Elixir Farm Botanicals). BuyersMarketing needs to be addressed in your business plan. What scale of production do you envision? There is no one established marketing channel for medicinal herbs. Most herb raw materials for nationally advertised nutriceutical products are contracted for production (often overseas). You may, of course, be thinking of making your own products or supplying local alternative practitioners. The following workbook has been found helpful for any new agricultural start-up business.Woods, Tim, and Steve Isaacs. 2000. PRIMER for Selecting New Enterprises for Your Farm. UK Cooperative Extension, Lexington. Resources:ATTRA PublicationsHerb Production in Organic SystemsGinseng, Goldenseal and Other Native RootsMinistry of Agriculture, Food, & Fisheries. 2002. Planning for Profit?Mixed herb crops. British Columbia. 10 p.