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Julia Shanks, Julia Shanks Food Consulting

Session:   Budgeting and Bookkeeping

“How do I make more money?” “Does it makes sense to sell wholesale?” “Can I afford to hire employees?” You have so many questions about your business. Believe it or not, most of these questions are straightforward when you have a good recordkeeping system. A good recordkeeping system is more than just tracking your sales and expenses for tax day. It’s about knowing and tracking the important numbers for your business so you can improve profitability, set goals, and grow your business. In this session we’ll talk about the basics of recordkeeping (whether you use Excel or QuickBooks) and what you need to do to easily answer the questions you have about your business and financials.



Julia brings a broad range of professional experience to her clients, from pilot to chef to serial entrepreneur. She combines the practicality of an accountant with the creativity of a chef.

Each business is different — whether a farm, food producer or chef; and the support the businesses need to grow vary.  Julia draws on a variety of tools and methodologies to support her clients’ growth and success: from writing businesses plans and creating financial feasibility models to recipe development.  Some of Julia’s most intriguing projects include developing a Cricket Cracker recipe for Aspire Food Group and refining the growth strategy of Boston’s first rooftop farm.

With a mission of supporting a sustainable and just food system, Julia wrote The Farmer’s Office: Tools, Tips and Template for Successfully Managing a Growing Farm Business.  The book coaches farmers to think like entrepreneurs so they can build a financially sustainable business. The Farmers Market Cookbook: The Ultimate Guide to Enjoying Fresh, Local, Seasonal Produce, co-authored with Brett Grohsgal and cited as a reference in Michelle Obama’s American Grown, highlights the joys of local produce; and helps consumers make the most of local farmers’ bounties.


Julia’s career started at the FAA as an aviation analyst and quickly swerved into the culinary arts. After more than a decade of professional cooking, she earned her MBA, taught graduate and undergraduate accounting, and helped small companies create business plans to get the financing they needed for growth.

Julia received her professional training as a chef at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, her BA from Hampshire College and an MBA, Magna Cum Laude in Entrepreneurship, from Babson College. She sits on the advisory boards of Chefs and Mass Farmers Markets. She is a QuickBooks certified Pro Advisor.

Farm Budgeting and Bookkeeping

2:00 ‐ 3:00 pm EST
General Sessions
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