Winter is Paperwork Season
Updated: Jul 27, 2022
It is finally looking like spring here at the farm. No snow has fallen for over a week although night-time temperatures continue to fall enough below zero that everything is well frozen when I go down to do morning chores. Chores and weather aside, winter is generally a time for paperwork for most farms and Borderlands is no exception. This year's paperwork was complicated somewhat by Gwendolyn and Brody actually physically joining Beverly and I here on the farm last summer- everything from banking, accounting, and taxes to legal formalities needed to be dealt with. We are also adding a wool milling business to the farm which required developing a new business plan, financial projections and examining funding requirements and opportunities.
A case in point is that we had to change our Farm Business Registration (FBR) number because we are now a four-partner entity. This meant that we had to deal with Agricorp – a provincial government agency – by first, canceling Beverly and my current FBR; then, in conjunction, applying for a new FBR. Sounds straight-forward! However, besides the mandatory paperwork, we also have to supply income tax documents that (a) prove we are all sharing in the farm business and (b) that the farm meets the minimum gross revenue hurdle of $7000. Once Agricorp had received all the necessary information, they reviewed it and decided whether to approve. Then we got notified, and, as it was approved, got to pay a fee.
Most farmers are way to busy to do paperwork during the growing season. When that is over, fall is the time to try to get ready for winter. I know very, very few that are ever totally prepared when winter hits!! I know I never seem to be! So, winter is the time to catch-up on paperwork – finish/update the stuff that just had to be done during spring/summer/fall but now requires further submissions; and get at all the other paperwork that has been waiting for up to 11 months to be dealt with done. It might not be what you think of when you think of farming, but I can assure you that January through March consists of a lot of time logged in front of a computer. I am looking forward to spending significantly less time at a desk as the 2022 growing season starts.