Farm Business Lab

Build the profitable farm business of your dreams!

What is the Farm Business Lab?

Farm Business Lab is an 8 week business planning program with ongoing support that will change the course of your farm. You will work with experienced coaches and facilitators to launch or grow your farm business over the course of the class.

The curriculum was developed in partnership with National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) and Cheshire County Conservation District (CCCD)

Who is the Farm Business Lab™ for?

The Farm Business Lab™ is for farm entrepreneurs. Previously only available to specialty crop producers, the Farm Business Lab is now open to all kinds of farmers.

What: Hands-on exercises, learning tools, dialogue, access to seasoned entrepreneurs, accountability for completing a business case document and business case presentation, and building a peer network.

Why: Farm Business Lab™ provides proven, practical business tools and builds confidence — you are the future of our local economy — and increases your chances for success significantly. Use Business Lab™ to build the vehicle to carry your idea, product, and dreams forward.

When: Eight class sessions over an eight-week period. Three hours of meeting time per class.

Where: The Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship, Keene, NH

Benefits of the Program

Farm Business Lab™ for business is a collaborative program. You will work with the instructor and other participants to discuss your business and dive deeply into the components of your business. The instructor’s role is to help facilitate the discussion and offer insight, where helpful.

We also invite a number of community-based entrepreneurs to share their expertise and experience with either starting a business or supporting growing businesses. Guest speakers include business founders, service providers, working professionals, and all-around wise sages.

Farm Business Lab™ offers an ideal setting for discovery, hands-on application of practical business tools, and the ability to clearly communicate the value of your product or service, and the benefits your business offers.

Clarity – Throughout the course, farmers will learn how to:

  • Enhance the competitiveness of your business
  • Receive technical assistance
  • Receive peer support from other farmers
  • Create a business plan
  • And more!


  • The network of fellow entrepreneurs will become your support system for years to come
  • You will have access to the network of business coaches at the Hannah Grimes Center

Program Components

(Class topics subject to change as needed to maximize the impact of the Business Lab™ experience)

Class 1

Introduction to Farm Business Lab™

  • Introductions
  • Class overview
  • Create mission, vision, and values
  • Understand the opportunity and or the problem your business addresses

Class 2

Whole Farm Planning

  • Getting started with a whole farm goal
  • Skills, scales, and design
  • Enterprise considerations

Class 3

Finances & Revenues

  • Business model and financial viability
  • Basic terms and definitions of financial terms
  • Financial statements, budget projections
  • Financing your business
  • Initial practice pitch

Class 4

Whole Farm Management

  • Understanding data to make informed business decisions
  • Assessing financial health
  • Labor management

Class 5

Customer, Marketing, and Sales

  • Defining and understanding your customer
  • Define the market and business need
  • Developing your marketing and sales plan
  • Telling your story

Class 6

Conservation Planning

  • Evaluating conservation concerns
  • Developing a conservation plan
  • Practice implementation
  • Conservation resources

Class 7

Pitch Practice & Farmer Roundtable

  • Full pitch practice
  • Farmer round table
  • Resource & planning ahead

Class 8

Pitch Event

  • Pitch your business to friends, family, and community members!
  • Debrief and assess your experience and all-important next steps


The following criteria may be taken into consideration for selection:

  • Producers needs/goals are a good match with program curriculum
  • Demonstrated interest in improving profitability and efficiency of your business
  • Demonstrated readiness to participate fully
  • Demonstrated trajectory for growth

Schedule, Cost, How to Apply


The meetings for this program will take place at Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship. Farm Business Lab™ meets on Thursdays for a three-hour energetic, hands-on work session. Full participation in all sessions is required!

Farm Business Lab™ meets once a week for 8 weeks, on Thursdays from 4:30 PM -7:30 PM on the following dates: 01/18, 01/25, 02/01, 02/08, 02/15, 02/22, 02/29, **3/07 – this last class is the culminating Pitch Event held on Thursday Night from 5:00 PM- 8:00 PM

The application period for this cohort is closed. 

Upcoming Program Dates

May 30
5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Hannah Grimes Food Biz Lab


The tuition for the upcoming Farm Business Lab cohort is covered by Hannah Grimes’ grant funding. Farmer entrepreneurs may take the course at no cost.

Application Process

  1. Please complete our New Client Form.
  2. Schedule a meeting with our Program Director to discuss fit for the Farm Business Lab™.
  3. Complete a Farm Business Lab™ application.
  4. Applications will be reviewed and applicants will be contacted before the start of the class to confirm program acceptance or schedule an additional interview, if necessary.

*As you complete each step in the application process, you will receive the link to complete the following step.

Thinking of starting your business?
Call us to get started!