How to Use Your Land for Agritourism
If you are investing in acreage for sale in Florida you are likely considering what to do with it. While farming, ranching, or development are obvious options, there’s alternative that you should consider that may work great for your land.
Much of the acres for sale in Florida is within close proximity to population centers Tampa, Orlando, and Miami. More and more people in these areas are looking to get away from the bustle of city life and enjoy a vacation that’s educational and relaxing. There are also city dwellers looking for a different type of experience. For these groups and so many more, agritourism is a viable option.
According to Purdue University, agritourism is defined as “any business conducted by a farmer or processor for the enjoyment or education of the public, to promote the products of the farm, and to generate additional farm income.” Agritourism can take on a number of forms including:
- U-Pick It farms
- Seasonal festivals
- Petting zoos
- Corn mazes
- Vacation ranches
- Bed and Breakfasts
- Educational tours
- Wedding venues
Considerations When Starting an Agritourism Business
Starting a successful agritourism business is not as simple as inviting people down to the farm to take a tour. Careful planning and consideration must go into this business, especially if you already have a commercial farm. Here are a few items to think about before you pursue this venture:
• What type of agritourism business do you want to create: As mentioned earlier, there are a number of options.
• Do you have a workable space: Based on what you want to do, you need to determine if you have enough space.
• Who’s your target customer: A standard business question.
• Competition: Are there other farms nearby with agritourism operations?
• Will you need to make changes to the property: This should be weighted out against potential profit.
• Land use rules and zoning: You need to find out if you are allowed to use your land for agritourism.
• Liability issues: You will need to have insurance that covers visitors to your farm.
• Water and wildlife issues: The agritourism operation must not harm nearby wildlife or the water supply.
• Neighbors: Check in with neighbors to see how they feel about increased traffic.
• Marketing: Develop a plan for online and offline marketing. Also, work with your local convention and visitors’ bureau to gain critical exposure.