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AgriPreneur Class Helps Entrepreneurs With Food or Farm Businesses

 

 

A centennial farm that sells maple syrup; a product that reduces the amount of water needed to grow plants; and a cash crop and heifer farm were just some of the business ideas being worked on by students in a class called AgriPreneur 2.0. The 10-week series of classes was designed to help entrepreneurs learn how to start or grow a food or farm business. Eleven students participated in the class which was offered by the Northwest Michigan Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and the Michigan State University Extension Product Center.

“It’s ten weeks of intensive planning to get people ready for financing if they need that,” said Annie Olds, SBDC Regional Director. “The topics we covered included understanding your financials, business plan development, marketing, and figuring out how to understand who your customers are.”

Agripreneur 2.0 Class - Spring 2015

Amber and Phillip Munday are taking over a fifth generation centennial farm and maple syrup business. They had already been working with the SBDC, but say by taking the class they picked up even more helpful information about running a business.

“It’s important in business today to get operating as quickly as you can, as cheaply as you can, and as efficiently as you can,” said Phillip. “That’s what the class helped us achieve.”

Jason Helbig wants to manufacture and sell a hands-free, portable device called Side Kick to help people who are tube fed. Even though it is not a food or farm business he said what he learned in the class will help him move forward with his plans.

“Funding and listing all your expenses and just a business plan were all on the other side of my brain that I don’t use,” said Helbig. “It was good to learn all that stuff.”

“At the end of ten weeks they’re very decisive, they know what it is they’re going for, they know what they want to start up,” said Olds. “Some of them are much, much closer to being in business and two or three of them will be in business within the next couple of months.”

 

Video Brief:

A class called AgriPreneur 2.0 helped entrepreneurs learn how to start or grow a food or farm business. The class was offered in Traverse City by the Northwest Michigan Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and the Michigan State University Extension Product Center. Watch the video to find out more.

 

 

Related info:  Small Business Development Center (Northwest Region)

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