Thursday, November 20, 2008

Nursery and Greenhouse - Challenges and Opportunities I

This is the first in a series on challenges and opportunities for nursery and greenhouse businesses. The information is from a presentation at a conference I recently attended.
  • Nursery and greenhouse businesses will need to focus on productivity, resource efficiency, and market visibility to remain profitable in the future.
  • Challenges are labor costs and availability, increased energy costs in production, increased transportation costs, and increased input costs such as containers and fertilizer.
  • The key in this economic downturn is to try to maintain cash flow. Working with your accountant and banker to analyze your cash flow situation and restructure debt if necessary is critical.
  • For the short term the credit crunch may limit your businesses ability to borrow money. If you have cash on hand, this is the time to use it
  • Inventory control will be critical. Common plants in the trade have been overproduced and are not moving well in this economic downturn. Do a lot of research before chosing plants to produce in the future. Consider producing those plants in demand but in shorter supply.

Gordon Johnson, Extension Horticulture Agent, UD, Kent County

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