Adapting to Uncertainty

Posted: April 17, 2019 by Karen Kipling
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The chaos surrounding Brexit continues. The only certainty is that our industry and the support it receives is destined to change.

Our advice is to get in the best possible shape to cope with whatever Brexit throws at your business. Good and bad!

To succeed we believe farmers should focus on the areas they can control and influence directly and in response to the uncertainty consider these eight key points:

Review your business

A full appraisal determining the business objectives and opportunities is crucial. What are the production costs? How reliant on support is the business? What could change and how can it adapt?

What is your farm best suited to?

Consider the farming systems and enterprises together with how available resources are used. Are there potential new income streams to complement the core business?

How do you farm?

Are there opportunities to work effectively with others to share resources and land selection to reduce costs? Effective collaboration will be an immensely valuable response to uncertainty.


Customer focus will be fundamental for farming businesses to determine whether they are simply producing commodities or adding value. Meeting market demand is essential.

Cost structures

Successful businesses manage costs and overheads ruthlessly. Reviewing and challenging working practices in pursuit of savings is vital.

What is an acceptable borrowing level for your business?

For some, reducing business borrowings will help manage risk at times of uncertainty. For others, new funding to improve efficiency or for a new enterprise may be the answer.

Time to diversify?

This might be the right time to make a fundamental lifestyle change. Your career stage or no business succession may make retirement or diversification a positive strategic decision.

Plan for the Future

With a thorough review, it is easier to build a realistic plan to work in a changing industry. The aim is to make the uncertainty an opportunity, playing to strengths and optimising resources.

To discuss your business and preparing for the future, please contact the Farm Business Services team at GSC Grays.

Robert Sullivan


MBPR P.Agric


Tel: 0191 3039541

Ali Gray

Rural Director



Tel: 01665 568 311

James Severn

Rural Director


Tel: 01347 837100

Greg Ricketts

Rural Director


Tel: 01748 897628