In addition to being a risk diversification strategy for established commodity producers, direct sales, often combined with agritourism, represent a key strategy for new/beginning farmers, likely due to a combination of lower barriers to entry and being good matches for new entrepreneurs. Recent surges in direct sales and agritourism offerings have producers and service providers looking for research-based guidance to enhance the viability of these operations. This presentation will present results from a NIFA-funded national agritourism and direct sales survey that sought to identify critical factors for success and risk-mitigation of small and medium-sized farms engaged in direct sales and agritourism.
This study comprised a multi-state team of university extension educators and researchers, collaborating with established direct sales and agritourism operators, to develop a national survey to better understand the factors contributing to the success and failure of small and medium-sized farms already engaged in direct sales and agritourism, as well as farms considering adding new enterprises. Responses were received from more than 1800 farmers, representing all fifty states.
This presentation will offer a current national view of the status of direct sales and agritourism enterprises, and the factors contributing to their successes and failures. Presenters will offer recommendations on how identified critical success factors can be translated into best pactices with appropiate decision aids and risk management tools. These recommendations can be used by agricultural service providers in their training programs, and readily adopted by farms, to reduce direct-sales and agritourism risks, and improve sustainability and regional destination vability.
|2021 Extension Risk Management Education National Conference