Suppose you’re starting a new business with one or more other owners, but you do not want it to be a Company. You can choose to form a partnership or limited partnership, which are the main alternatives to the corporate form of a business.
The key features of these two ownership structures are:
General Partners – are subject to unlimited liability. If a business can’t pay its debts, its creditors can reach into general partners’ personal assets. General partners have the authority and responsibility to manage the business. They are roughly equivalent to the managing director and other high-level managers of a business company. The general partners usualy divide authority and responsibility among themselves, and often they elect one member of their group as the senior general partner or elect a small executive committee to make major decisions.
Limited Partners – escape the unlimited liability that general partners have hanging around their necks. You can reduce the more painful consequences of entering into a partnership by having your involvement registered as a limited partnership. A limited partnership is very different from a general partnership. It is a legal animal that, in certain circumstances, combines the best attributes of a partnership and a corporation.
A limited partnership works like this. There must be one or more general partners with the general partners with the same basic rights and responsibilities (including unlimited liability) as in any general partnership, and one or more limited partners who are usually passive investors. The big difference between a general partner and a limited partner is that the limited partner isn’t personally liable for debts of the partnership. The most a limited partner can lose is the amount that he or she paid or agreed to pay into the partnership as a capital contribution; or received from the partnership after it became insolvent.
To keep this limited liability, a limited partner may not participate in the management of the business, with very few exceptions. A limited partner who does get actively involved in the management of the business risks losing immunity from personal liability and having the same legal exposure as a general partner.
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Many South African consumers are beginning to factor in the welfare of animals as well as the conditions in which they were raised, when making purchasing decisions on what animal products to purchase.
On the surface, egg production from caged layers seems like a profitable and highly efficient poultry production system and it is. Farmers using this mode of production still produce most of the eggs locally at a fairly low cost of production. While the drought and feed shortages have put some pressure on the industry, it is still a highly efficient production system.
However, the conditions in which these birds produce eggs is not always humane. They are raised in an environmentally controlled environment where their only purpose is to eat and lay eggs. They are like egg laying machines. This is generally done in a very tiny space that is barely the size of an A4 paper. Some farmers use antibiotics indiscriminately in order to improve the productivity of the chickens in the cage environment.
Chickens raised in a barn environment fare slightly better depending on the farmer’s stocking density. If the conditions are good, they will have the room to move around and express a bit of their natural behavior. While most farmers consider the barn- based environment as “free range” it is not sufficiently so and with proper legislation and standards.These chickens may not be considered free range unless the farmer provides reasonable access to the outdoors for a designated number of hours per day via peepholes. Still, in some countries such as Australia, barn-raised chickens are often considered as free-range. Many SA farmers who use the barn system also label their chickens as free-range products.
However, true free-range poultry production is when the chickens are allowed access to the outdoors and given a well managed outdoor range in which the chickens can forage and feed on the grass, legumes, worms, and grubs to supplement their formulated poultry diet.
RULES & REGULATIONS
When starting a free -range chicken egg farming operation in South Africa, it is important to familiarize yourself with the various rules and regulations governing the industry. Talk to the local authorities and determine if you will need any permissions. A static housing may require certain permissions which might not be the case with mobile chicken houses for your free-range chickens.
There are various initial costs that you will grapple with when launching your free-range egg farming business in South Africa. However, what you eventually get to foot will depend on the scale of your ambition as a farmer. There are the costs associated with the setting up the static building and buying various poultry equipment such as the poultry feeders, drinkers and nest boxes. Some SA poultry farmers prefer to mechanize a bit. They do that by introducing mobile sheds or “egg mobiles” which allow the free-range hens to graze over a vast piece of land and glean all the nutrients found therein.
If you are rearing the commercial egg-laying varieties such as the Hayline Brown and the Hyline Silver Brown layers in SA, then it is advisable to purchase those that are ready to start laying and which are generally aged at about 16 weeks. This will help you cut down on the high cost and high-risk process of rearing your layers from about day old to 16 weeks of age. By the time you begin seeing a positive cash flow, the hens should be aged anywhere from 35 to 40 weeks. When buying your hens, you can start by placing a provisional order earlier on before the start date. Many breeders will require that you book your hens weeks in advance.
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There’s always a market for baby vegetables, and carrots are no exception. Carrots are root vegetables which originated in Asia. They belong to the same family as celery, coriander and parsley. According to Bill Kerr a vegetable specialist there are a few important steps in producing quality baby carrots
Step 1 – Fertilization – The first step is to ensure correct fertilization. Too much nitrogen will stimulate leaf growth, causing the more advanced plants to overshadow the weaker ones. The advanced plants will then form normal- sized roots, while completing suppressing the adjacent carrots, rendering them useless.
Step 2 – Planting & Spacing – The next step is to select the correct location for planting, You will need 10 to 12 times more seeds per hectare in order produce a plant density where competition for light restricts growth. Spacing is important; you need a population in which every plant produces a marketable root. Too high a population will result in unusable plants, often at the expense of the plants alongside them.
Step 3 – Irrigation – Step three is to ensure correct irrigation. While normal sized carrots need to be progressively stressed in stages, baby carrots need frequent, light irrigation, as root growth must be restricted.
Carrots can be attacked by several fungal, bacterial and nematode diseases. These diseases can cause poor plant growth, reduced yield and quality of the product. The most important carrot disease is “powdery mildew” (Erysiphe heraclei) which is the most widespread and causes significant yield and quality loss on carrots.
Powdery Mildew of carrot is very common during hot and humid weather of the cropping season. It attacks the foliage of carrots by covering the leaves with fugal mass sporulations. Severe infection causes poor plant growth, reduced yield and quality of seeds and roots.
The disease affects foliage, stems and umbels. Patches of white, fluffy fungus appear on the lower leaves first, and then spread to the terminal growth. The fungus often covers entire leaves with its masses of white mycelium and powdery spores. Severe infection can result in loss of foliage, causing lower yields and in seed crops poor seed quality.
Removal of alternate hosts and carrot residues from the field;
Crop rotation with none host crops.
Avoid excess irrigation;
Spray with locally registered sulfur fungicides such as “Bayleton”;
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Cash burn rate is the rate at which a company uses up its cash reserves or cash balance. How fast are you burning through your cash reserves? Or is your cash moving the other direction, building up a healthy balance from positive cash flow. Cash burn rate is a big concern for funded startups. The typical pattern is to get funded, use that cash to build the business, and then aim to get positive cash flow before the money runs out.
This is sometimes expressed as a “cash runway”. Cash runway is how long your cash will last at your current burn rate. The same metric is useful for mature businesses too. How fast are you growing your cash reserve? Or, are you strategically investing that money to fund faster growth? Whatever your plans, be sure to keep an eye on this metric to make sure you are hitting your targets.
HOW TO CALCULATE YOUR RATE:
To determine the burn rate for a selected period, you need to find the difference between the starting and ending cash balances for a particular period. Did you lose or gain cash? Then divide that total by the number of months in the selected period. The result is a monthly value.
It’s often best to have a negative burn rate. That means you are building your cash reserves, not using them up. There are certainly cases where investing your cash in growth is a good idea though: startups, obviously, but also bootstrapped companies that are trying to grow. Just make sure you plan for that cash burn and then track your progress. If you burn through your cash reserves faster than expected, you may end up in trouble.
HOW TO REDUCE YOUR BURN RATE:
If your cash burn rate is higher than you want, the numbers to change are pretty simple. You need to increase your incoming cash, decrease your outgoing cash, or both. Here are some ideas on how to do this:
Increase your revenue – Look for ways to boost your traffic, get more prospects into your pipeline, increase your conversion or close rates, or raise your pricing. More sales should translate into more cash coming in.
Reduce your payroll expenses – For labor-intensive businesses, deferring new hires, laying off non – essential workers, or limiting benefits can lead to big savings. Make sure any cuts are smart and sustainable.
Reduce your direct costs – For low-margin businesses, finding ways to minimize raw materials and other direct costs can make a big difference in cash flows.
Reduce or defer other expenses – Take a close look at your budget. Are there expenses that aren’t contributing to your company’s success?
Ditch unprofitable revenue streams – It’s not uncommon for businesses to offer secondary products or services that don’t break even. Why work for free?
Encourage cash sales – Cash sales are great; you get the money right away instead waiting for it. Make sure to offer credit terms selectively and smartly, rather than just converting what would have been immediate transactions into delayed ones.
If you’ve done all you can to affect your incoming and outgoing cash, but your burn rate is still too high – and, crucially, you are confident that your business can be successful – you may need to do more fundraising. Be sure to do this as early in the process as possible, since a business running low on cash may strike potential lenders as too risky.
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Asparagus, unlike most vegetables, is a perennial; the same plants grow and produce food year after year – 15 years or more, in some cases. It’s dioecious, meaning there are both female and male plants. Female plants usually produce larger spears, male plants a greater number of smaller, more – uniform spears.
New asparagus plantings needs two years to fill out, during which time they require periodic weeding and mulching. In the third year plants produce enough spears for picking, though its still important to leave behind enough fronds so that the plants become dense with foliage by midsummer.
HOW TO GROW ASPARAGUS
Asparagus is planted in beds in a row, with enough space between each plant to allow it to grow.The spears then burst through the soil, becoming green through photosynthesis, before they harvest. You don’t need a large garden to try growing the vegetable yourself though as they will also grow in pots or containers.
They should be planted in spring, and it is easiest to plant one-year- old dormant plants than seeds. Asparagus should be planted in a manure – covered trench, with plants staggered evenly with wide spaces in between adjacent rows.
Asparagus is eaten as a vegetable boiled, steamed, fried or raw in salads. It is also rich in Vitamins A,B6,C, E& K and also contains high levels of folate, calcium, iron and protein. Is said to help prevent kidney stones. Asparagus is also blanched and sold in cans.
Asparagus does best on sandy and sandy loam soils. It can be planted on soils with a pH of between 6 and 7.Soil preparation is very important. A month before planting soil should be ripped to a depth of at least 600mm to loosen the soil. If soil are too acid and the pH must be adjusted, then lime should be added to bring the pH to above 6.
The soil are now deep ploughed and turned to between 400mm and 500mm. Pre-plant organic fertilizer can now be worked into the soil as well as the lime. A month later when you are ready to plant, pre-plant chemical fertilizer and mix need to be applied into the top 20cm of soil with a disc plough. This also cleans and levels the planting area and get rid of any weeds that have taken hold. You are now ready to draw your planing furrows and start planting your asparagus crowns.
Freshly cut spears are washed, graded, bundled and cut into uniform lengths. Spear length may vary from 23cm to 25 cm. Bundles weighing approximately 250g are stood upright in cartons that sometimes contain water – absorbent pads. Asparagus is usually sold on the domestic market in 6kg cartons, or on the export market in 10kg wooden boxes. Pre – cooling is essential to maintain quality. Asparagus cooled to 0 degrees C will remain saleable for approximately 2 weeks if stored at that temperature.
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