By Stephanie Elsen
The Farm Financial Standards Council or “FFSC” is an all-volunteer non-profit group consisting of individuals interested in the improvement of financial and managerial accounting for agricultural producers. The FFSC works to create uniformity in farm financial accounting analysis. Farmers can benefit from paying attention to the FFSC and The Guidelines.
Using The Financial Guidelines for Agriculture provides consistency to third parties such as lenders and consultants. If you understand and follow The Guidelines, your lenders and consultants will have a better understanding of your financial information. With a better understanding of your business, those third parties can help you improve your operation. While you may be using your farm accounting software application to track this information, setting it up correctly is also important, and that’s when you can turn to The FFSC Guidelines.
The FFSC Guidelines are detailed in one document, which is indexed by subject. While The Guidelines are quite lengthy, reading the entire document from cover to cover is not necessary. Rather, The Guidlines should be used as a resource when a specific question arises. For example, there may be a field in your accounting system for you to assign a value to breeding livestock. You may not be aware of how to assign this value, and this situation is a perfect example of when to turn to the FFSC Guidelines and look up the best way do that.
The FFSC was created to promote uniformity and integrity in financial reporting and analysis for farmers. Learn more about their mission and the tools they offer by visiting their Web site: www.ffsc.org.