Super Bowl of Farming

rainbow-3The Super Bowl of Football is coming up in about two weeks. I have always thought that the game of football has many similarities to the business of farming.

During the off and pre-season, the team is acquiring talent based upon their needs and goals for the upcoming season. As farmers, during this off-season, we need to acquire our own talent. This talent could be a new CPA for estate and tax planning, a new attorney for business entity selection, a new insurance agent for asset protection and liquidity. It could be reviewing new types of seed or fertilizer options for the upcoming season.

After the pre-season is done, the early football season gets started. This involves playing games and seeing how the team is playing against the competition. If they are playing well, then small tweaks may be made. If they are playing bad, then major changes need to be made. With farming, after the crop is planted, you need to check how it emerges, how your application of nutrients is working. If pests or weeds are rampant, appropriate applications of herbicides and pesticides are made. If you are an organic farmer, then natural applications are made.

The season goes for about 17 weeks. There are ups and downs and if the team has prepared and executed well, they make the playoffs. If a farmer executes well during the growing season, it will make it to harvest.

In the playoffs, the regular season no longer means anything. You either win each week, or the team goes home. With farming, as you harvest, you have immediate feedback as to whether you had a winning season or not. If the crop exceeds your average for previous year or you exceed what your neighbors are doing, then you had a good regular season and a successful playoff (harvest). If not, you lost for that week or season.

Only one teams wins the Super Bowl and the other 31 teams go home “loser”. Even if you do not win your Super Bowl harvest, you are like all 32 football teams since there will be a new season for everyone to start over and win again.

May your favorite team win the Super Bowl and if not, remember they can win next year.

  • Principal
  • CliftonLarsonAllen
  • Yakima, Washington
  • 509-823-2920

Paul Neiffer is a certified public accountant and business advisor specializing in income taxation, accounting services, and succession planning for farmers and agribusiness processors. Paul is a principal with CliftonLarsonAllen in Yakima, Washington, as well as a regular speaker at national conferences and contributor at Raised on a farm in central Washington, he has been immersed in the ag industry his entire life, including the last 30 years professionally. In fact, Paul drives a combine each summer for his cousins and that is what he considers a vacation.

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