South Carolina Program Offers Business Assistance for Agribusiness, Too

It’s no secret that farming is a business, and business people often need partners. Jim Johnson is a senior business consultant and agribusiness specialist with the South Carolina Small Business Development Center at USC. He provides farmers with help, especially when it comes to business planning.

“One of the areas of need most of these folks is business, the business side of things, the market, you know, financial management, you know, those types of activities that you know, when people got in the farm and they want to put their hands in the soil, they want to farm production. But there’s so much more to it dependent on I guess the business model they’re working in.”

Johnson says one of the reasons he became a business consultant is to help people and through SBDC he can do that, especially with grants.

“Grants can definitely be helpful. It’s usually not for startup, usually want to have been in business for a couple years. And you’re trying usually to grow your business or build some infrastructure somehow. marketing infrastructure, probably because most of the most of the grants usually revolve around you know, markets and getting more new business and things like that.”

One of the larger projects he’s worked on was the resilient food systems infrastructure or RFSI program.

“And we thought it was a great benefit for South Carolina, and the South Carolina Department of Ag did a great job of putting this grant opportunity together in a short period of time and given the information they were given from the USDA. They’re actually ahead of most states.”