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Agricultural tourism, often called ‘agritourism,’ is a method of direct marketing, as it can be another financial option to sell and promote farm products, one’s farming enterprise and share the benefits of farming with your community and the public. Types of agritourism include, but are not limited to farm tours, product tastings and educational classes. Recreational activities on the farm are considered agritourism as well. Examples are farm-stays (camping), fishing or hunting, nature-related activities, U-pick and farm-to-table dinner events. Essentially, activity which opens the farm to the public may be marketed as agritourism. In some instances, farmer’s markets and farm stands may be listed as agritourism; however, these are actually each different methods of direct marketing.

Because there are many options for adding agritourism to a farm or ranch enterprise, thorough planning is advised. Just as one plans a farming enterprise, things to consider for an agritourism endeavor include what you want to do and how often (e.g. seasonal); additional structures and equipment requirements and capability; staffing, risk management and insurance needs; general regulations and special permit requirements; and marketing trends and options.  Also consider the community environment where your farm is located. Are there any zoning or other land use restrictions. Will extra communications with neighbors and local community be necessary to gain support of your agritourism business?

Visit these agritourism resource pages on this site for links to several sources of relevant information. 

Agritourism Resources (this website section)

Resource Directory: Agritourism and Direct Marketing