Agritourism – Bringing people back to the farm!
More and more people are showing interest in having an agritourism experience. It may be picking fruits and vegetables or a wine tasting or a corn maze. Others are interested in learning how their food is grown and others want to purchase local foods. And the list goes on.
Many small farmers and ranchers are looking at responding to this growing interest by starting a agritourism venture alongside their ongoing enterprise. However in lots of cases, the agritourism business is substantially different than their current business and requires different skills, talents, and marketing
Extension across the country has stepped up to provide educational programs to cover these new areas of education and support that agritourism operators are requesting. An example of a recent effort has been the University of California Cooperative Extension Small Farm Program. It has provided lunchtime webinars, led by Penny Leff, as part of their offerings.
The webinars were recorded and offer tips on marketing as well as negotiating regulatory issues. And you can find more agritourism resources on their website. A colleague and I have done several articles on the topic including:
- Finding Opportunities in Agritourism
- Fine Tune Your Agritourism Operation
- Agritourism: People Will Come
- 4 Types of Agritourism Visitors
Agritourism is an opportunity that continues to grow. Check it out to see if it might be right for you.