Years ago, the Alabama Cooperative Extension System published an Alabama Farm Book. This annual publication was a series of legal and ledger size paper worksheets for farmers to write down different types of farm income and expense, separated into 12-18 columns. This publication was the farmer’s spreadsheet 50 years ago. By completing this Alabama Farm Book, the farmer had all the information they needed to manage the farm and prepare their tax return.
Today, most paper and pencil worksheets have been replaced by an electronic spreadsheet, such as an Excel spreadsheet from Microsoft. Electronic spreadsheets are designed to enter and total farm income and expenses easily. Spreadsheets can be set up in many different ways for many different agricultural purposes. Livestock producer spreadsheets may look very different from traditional row crop farmers’ spreadsheets as they track information unique to their farm operations.
However, at the end of the year, the vast majority of producers’ spreadsheet data is used to prepare their IRS Form 1040 – Schedule F – Profit or Loss from Farming. Therefore, in order to design a spreadsheet that almost any farmer can use to enter farm checks and deposits, the Farm and Agribusiness Management team has set up an Excel spreadsheet that follows IRS Form 1040 – Schedule F.
This worksheet is part of the Farm and Agribusiness Management team’s new Farm Accounting 101 series to train Alabama producers on improved farm financial record keeping.
There are three sheets in this worksheet:
- Part 1 Income
- Part 2 Expense
- Profit Summary
The first sheet is designed to enter your farm’s bank deposits and record all types of farm income. The second sheet is designed to enter your farm’s expenses of all types. The third sheet summaries the first two pages and calculates your farm’s profit or loss for the year.
Once you download this spreadsheet, you can use it with or without modification for your farm’s unique operations. It is our hope that you will find this spreadsheet helpful in tracking your farm’s profit or loss for the year.
If you would like to read more about a farm tax return and the information required to be used for the return, you can visit the IRS website at www.irs.gov and request Publication 225 – Farmer’s Tax Guide to read all the details and instructions on Form 1040 – Schedule F.
If you have any questions about the Schedule F Farm Income and Expense Worksheets spreadsheet, please contact your local farm and agribusiness regional agent or visit the Alabama Extension website at www.aces.edu.