Monday, April 24, 2017

Spring is Here!

Now is a great time to do a little spring cleaning of your financial records. You are likely either going through the data for your 2016 tax return, or have recently completed it, so all of the information should be fresh in your mind. What a perfect time to review those things that took a little longer to figure out and fine-tune your system to make it easier for next year. For example:
  • Maybe it’s a change to your chart of accounts where you have similar accounts and you now realize they could be combined into one account.
o   Did you know there is a function in most accounting software that will combine one or more accounts and all of the history?
  • Maybe it’s providing more detail to your accountant, loan officer or other third party by breaking out certain accounts such as:
o   Raised vs. purchased livestock
o   Family living and personal allocations
o   Allocate principal and interest
  • Maybe it’s a matter of the way you enter your data.
o   Enter quantities such as lbs., number of head
o   Detail in capital assets changes
o   Coop patronage retained

In any event, we at Yankee Farm Credit are here to help with the knowledge and experience to make those records squeaky clean!

We'd love to help with your Spring Cleaning, click here so we can get started.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Annual Meeting Results

It has been a busy week here at Yankee as we held annual meetings Monday in Middlebury, VT; Tuesday in both Hanover, NH and Newport, VT; and wrapping up last night in St. Albans, VT. At each meeting members had the opportunity to listen to director candidates, vote for directors in their region, hear from Brenda Frank, CEO and Paul Franklin, Board Chair about the state of the Association, and observe a presentation on survey results about transferring farm ownership conducted by Business Consultant Joanna Lidback.

Last night members completed voting for directors, ballots were counted, and the results were announced before the meeting was adjourned.
Elected to three year terms on the board of directors were:
Region 1 – Celeste Kane-Stebbins
Region 2 – Kyle Thygesen
Region 3 – Paul Franklin
Congratulations to Celeste, Kyle and Paul, and thanks to Anne Lincoln and Joseph O'Gorman for participating in the elections as candidates.

Thank you to the members that participated, and a special thanks to employees for organizing and running successful meetings. We welcome any feedback about annual meetings. If you have questions or comments please let us know! You can email your thoughts or give our Corporate Secretary, Jim Mills, a call at 800-639-3053.

Thursday, April 6, 2017


We recently shared the #1 reason for having an 
accounting software program –
“For viewing information that allows you to make informed management decisions.”

In addition, there are times it may be necessary to provide financial information about your farm to third parties such as loan officers, consultants and others. Accounting software gives you the ability to track information about your farm, making it easy to provide third parties the detailed information they require. Whether it is for your management team, loan officer, tax preparer or workman's comp auditor, with a good agriculturally oriented accounting software system in place, financial management should be the easiest part of running your business.

If you are interested in discovering how your accounting software can help you manage your business, need help setting up your accounting system or are thinking maybe now is a good time to hire an outside professional to process the financial accounting data for you, we want to hear from you. Comment below or send your questions to our team at Yankee Farm Credit.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

FarmStart - Alyssa Sherburn, Pinestead Farm

Alyssa Sherburn from Franconia, New Hampshire is the owner/operator of Pinestead Farm, one of Yankee's most recent FarmStart investments. Alyssa is the fifth generation at Pinestead Farm where she grows vegetables and raises beef, pigs, and chickens that are sold at local co-ops, farmers’ markets, and restaurants.  She is in her second year of ownership of the farm, although she has been involved in management for the past 10 years with her father.  Alyssa was looking to expand her markets and growing season, but was limited by her 10 acre land base and the winter weather.
Alyssa used her FarmStart investment to purchase a Leafy Green Machine from Freight Farms, Inc.  Freight Farms takes old shipping containers with all of the insulation and converts them to hydroponic farming units that can grow up to 2 acres of vegetables.  These units are intuitively climate controlled and can be remotely overseen with a mobile app, Farmhand.  This app monitors everything happening inside the unit, tracks two weeks of historical data, and prompts the farmer when it is time to harvest and plant.  The unit takes 20 hours per week of labor and it is 6 weeks from planting to harvest.  The initial purchase of the Leafy Green Machine comes with two months’ supply of nutrients and seeds.

The Leafy Green Machine will allow Alyssa to grow vegetables 365 days a year no matter the weather, increasing her summer production and permitting for winter production.  Alyssa has contracts with the Littleton Co-op, North Country Farmer’s Coop, and a couple restaurants for her first winter of growing.  These buyers will be working with her on what to grow.  As she gets comfortable with the process, she will begin to add more customers and grow her markets.  She is very excited about this new venture and to be working with FarmStart. 

What Alyssa wants you to know about Pinestead:

Our farm in Franconia, NH has been family owned and operated since 1793. It has remained a working farm throughout the centuries. There have always been large vegetable gardens, from which the family sold and consumed fresh produce all spring, summer and fall, while drying, canning, pickling, and storing the bounty for the long winters. We have always kept a variety of livestock including beef cattle, chickens, pigs and horses. There is a working maple sugar house, sawmill and shingle mill on the property. We recently added a hydroponic system from Freight Farms in Boston, MA.  We are now able to grow lettuce year round in a re-purposed shipping container! The closed system uses 90% less water than traditional agriculture. We sell all of our products in our farm stand on the property and at weekly Farmer’s Markets, Spring through Fall.  We also work closely with local restaurants, the Littleton Food Co-op and North Country Farmer’s Co-op.  All of our vegetables are grown without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides. We strive to improve the health of our soils and pastures which, in turn, nurtures the vegetables, fruits, animals and ourselves. We practice crop rotation, cover cropping, active composting, companion planting and rotational grazing.  Guests are welcome to rent rooms in our Farmhouse and to explore Pinestead Farm!

The goal of FarmStart is to provide working capital to help start-up farmers establish a positive business and credit history during the early phases of their business careers. Within five years recipients should be positioned to graduate to a conventional line of credit from Yankee or another lender.

To learn more about FarmStart please visit our website or contact your local office.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Is your Financial Management System as efficient as it can be?

While accounting software may be easy to find and purchase, what really matters most is the ability to enter your data into the program in a way that is meaningful. The system you use should allow you to enter transactions easily and intuitively so the data will be accumulated into the correct ‘income or expense bucket’. If your business accounting software system is not intuitive or is just plain difficult, you will find mistakes being made, and this will make the analysis of the data extremely difficult, if not impossible.

The number one reason for having an accounting software program is for viewing information that allows you to make important management decisions. Are you able to pull out the information you have entered in such a way you can make good management decisions for your business? Taking a bigger picture view of the business using reports to analyze where the business is, where it has been and where it should go? By using your accounting software and data in the correct way, you are ensured of making better, more informed decisions, thereby improving your business’s profitability in the short term and for years to come.

Are you:

  • Interested in discovering how your accounting software can help you manage your business. 
  • In need of help setting up your accounting system. 
  • Thinking maybe now is a good time to hire an outside professional to process the financial accounting data for you.
Our team at Yankee Farm Credit is here to assist you!
 Click here to request more information, or visit us at

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

FarmStart-Adam Allen, Kingdom Timber Logging & Forestry LLC

Adam Allen, owner operator of Kingdom Timber Logging & Forestry LLC
Adam Allen, age 22 is the owner and operator of Kingdom Timber Logging and Forestry LLC in Eden, VT and a new Yankee Farm Credit FarmStart investment. Adam earned a bachelor’s degree in forestry operation through Paul Smiths College in NY December 2015.  He is using his FarmStart investment to purchase a new skidder and assist with day to day operating expenses.  With this new equipment Kingdom Timber will be able to offer a wider array of forest products and services. 

Kingdom Timber operates mostly in northern Vermont, serving both private and industrial land owners seeking a forester to manage their land. They offer private forestry consulting, current use application and planning, timber theft cases, maple sugarbush management, set-up and management of timber harvests, boundary delineation, and professional timber harvesting.  They plan to produce saw timber and pulp which will be marketed to saw mills, pulp mills and bio-mass plants inside and outside of Vermont. 

Adam has already established himself in the logging community and industry in Northern Vermont with 8 years of logging experience. He has a mentor in place to help him make important management decisions and has a good reputation as a hard worker with a passion for logging.  We look forward to helping him achieve greater success.
Check out his Facebook page here.

The goal of FarmStart is to provide working capital to help start-up farmers establish a positive business and credit history during the early phases of their business careers. Within five years recipients should be positioned to graduate to a conventional line of credit from Yankee or another lender.

To learn more about FarmStart please visit our website or contact your local office.

Monday, February 13, 2017

VT Secretary of Ag. Tebbetts Plans Conference Call for Dairy Farmers-TOMORROW

Secretary Tebbetts would like to provide an update to dairy farmers that may have migrant labor by conference call on:
Tuesday, February 14 from noon to 1 p.m.
Call in number:
Conference room number – 8279200
Agenda for the call
1.       Work done so far
a.       Brainstorming at meeting Feb. 2.
b.      Governor’s cabinet on Civil Rights
c.       Law to be passed and impact to farm labor
2.       Ideas for emergency milking relief
a.       Assistance from inmates
   i.      Training
  ii.      Pay
 iii.      Length of time
b.      Longer term hiring of inmates upon release if trained etc.
c.       How to alert farmers that this exists without keeping a list

3.       Longer term action
a.       H2A application for 10 months of labor
b.      Emergency application
4.       Feedback from those on the call
Please share this message with other dairy farmers who you may know that fit this description.
Please help us get the word out widely. 

Thursday, February 9, 2017

New Employee - Amy Baisden

Amy Baisden joined our Middlebury staff at the end of January as a Loan Documentation Specialist. Amy earned her Juris Doctor degree from Case Western Reserve University School of Law and most recently was a managing partner of a small law firm in South Burlington. For generations, her family raised beef cattle in Fayette County, WV. Amy is looking forward to turning her career toward supporting farmers and agricultural businesses.

Welcome to team Yankee Farm Credit!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

FarmStart - Justin and Rachel Sauerwein

Justin and Rachel Sauerwein are a FarmStart investment with Yankee Farm Credit. The Sauerweins will be using their FarmStart investment to purchase feeder calves for their beef farming operation Almanack Farm in Chelsea, VT.

Justin is a graduate of the University of Illinois and is the farm’s primary manager. Rachel, Justin’s wife, is a graduate of the University of Chicago and provides secondary management along with managing the farm’s financial records and web based marketing. The Sauerweins raise grass fed beef on the beautiful rolling hills of their 70 acre farm. Currently their herd consists of nine animals but should grow to roughly twenty by the end of the year. Their animals are processed locally and distributed through a local wholesaler to various inns and restaurants throughout Central Vermont. The Sauerweins use this sales and distribution method to regulate their sales volume but are hoping to better utilize their farm’s website as their capacity increases. Yankee is excited to partner with Justin and Rachel as they build their herd and expand their capacity to meet the growing demand for locally produced grass fed beef throughout the association’s territory.

The goal of FarmStart is to provide working capital to help start-up farmers establish a positive business and credit history during the early phases of their careers. Within five years recipients should be able to graduate to a conventional line of credit from Yankee or another lender.