Farm Business Survey
Rural Business Research

What is the Farm Business Survey?

The Farm Business Survey provides information on the physical and economic performance of farm businesses in England, to inform policy decisions on matters affecting farm businesses. It is intended to serve the needs of government, government partners, farming and land management interest groups, and researchers.

The Farm Business Survey is an annual survey commissioned by the government under which a range of management accounting information on all aspects of farmer's and grower's businesses is collected. The survey uses a sample of farms that is representative of the national population of farms in terms of farm type, farm size and regional location.

How many farms are involved?

Over 2,300 farm businesses in England and Wales take part in the FBS survey each year.

Are the results confidential?

Yes. Details of individual farms are not published. Each participating farm is given a code number and not identified by name or place. Our independence from government and commercial organisations ensures that your identity is never released to anyone outside of your regional RBR unit. Minimum sample sizes prevent extraction of individual farm data.

Who is behind the Farm Business Survey?

Rural Business Research - the FBS academic consortium - of six University Research Centres carries out the Farm Business Survey in England. Click the logos for more information.

These reports include data collected in the Farm Business Survey. In England the Farm Business Survey is conducted on behalf of, and financed by, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the data collected in it are Crown Copyright.

The Rural Business Unit, University of Cambridge maintains and publishes FBS Farm Business Benchmarking. is assembled, maintained, and published by:

For User Queries, Improvements, or Suggestions
please contact in the first instance:

Most Recent Developments:

  • Coming-soon! Launch of simplified user interface for benchmarking and projections
    - easier to find important comparisons
  • 2016/2017 Development and beta-testing of SIP-benchmarking
    - Sustainable Intensification Benchmarking
  • Jan-2017 Published Internet Reports for 2015/16
    - most recent results
  • Nov/Dec-2016 Output, in profitability benchmarking, broken into main headings
    - more meaningful comparisons
  • Nov/Dec-2016 Added tooltips, and 5 enterprises for benchmarking of gross margins
    - namely: Spring wheat, Peas, Contract-reared-pigs, LFA+Lowland Suckler cows
  • Mar/Jul-2016 Redesigned landing pages
    - more intuitive and accessible interface
  • Ongoing Presentations/workshops
    - professional development presentations to farmers and industry in England
  • Jan-2016 Published Internet Reports for 2014/15
    - most recent results
  • Nov/Dec-2015 Commissioned and moved to dedicated "cloud" server
    - up-to-date system (with all data encrypted)
  • Dec-2015 Removed two "farm accounts" in benchmarking
    - anomalous data (2 residual categories) not present
  • Nov-2015 Added "Simplified" option for rendering
    - better interface for small screens (as some users complained about use on tablets)
  • Oct-2015 Posted more learning resources
    - for lecturers and students of farm management
  • Aug-2015 Split Dairy Benchmarking into 'Upland' and 'Lowland'
    - better peer groups
  • Jul-2015 Updated Links & Learning Resources
    - incorporates new AHDB branding and links. Outreach for farm management lecturers
  • Jun-2015 Fuel and Electricity benchmarking
    - benchmarking of Standard Inputs for Fuel and Electricity (litres red diesel; kWh_elec)
  • May-2015 Revised Quick Guide to FBS data builder
    - link.
  • Mar-2015 Wholesale Gas Prices into projector
    - incorporated EU gas import prices in projector, instead of UK electricity forward-baseload
  • Feb-2015 Milk prices into projector
    - following low milk prices, a static coefficient was introduced in projector
Cattle-eating Poulty-standing

The Farm Business Survey is conducted on behalf of, and financed by, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the data collected in it are Crown Copyright

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Enterprise Gross Margins
Net Farm Profit
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Projected Gross Margins
Projected Farm Profit
Assumptions and Calculations
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