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September 9, 2016

Florida Agritourism Gets a Boost From a New AgriTourism Association

Florida agritourism and the growers behind it have a new ally in their ag diversification efforts: the Florida AgriTourism Association.

Two of Florida’s leading industries are tourism and agriculture, so it only makes sense that Florida agritourism is growing quickly throughout the state. Florida recently established the Florida AgriTourism Association to support the growing agritourism market in Florida. Find out what it means for operators in The Sunshine State below.

Florida Agritourism and Growers

There’s are a few simple reasons behind why agritourism is growing so quickly in Florida. One of the main driving forces is that consumer demand for Florida agritourism is at an all-time high. It’s an effect of the local food movement where consumers are truly interested in how their food is grown and raised. As more people become interested in farms, agricultural operations offer a novel destination experience.

On the other side of the coin, farmers and ranchers are happy to start agritourism operations because agritourism serves the dual purpose of educating consumers about agriculture and diversifying farm and ranch operations. Diversification can help offset the costs of growing a crop, and provide an added layer of security against the ups and downs of agricultural markets. Examples of how to diversify an ag operation with agritourism include farm tours, u-pick (or we-pick), country stores on property, seasonal events (such as a fall festival or crop maze), and event venue services.

AgriTourism Association Offerings

Florida’s AgriTourism Association program aims to offer support to Florida growers on topics like education, business development, marketing, and legislative advocacy. Farmers and growers in Florida will have opportunities to learn more about the options within agritourism. The association will also offer resources on forming, running, and marketing an agritourism venture. Lastly, the association will work as a voice for Florida agritourism in government.

The Florida AgriTourism Association is leading the way in the growing agritourism industry. It’s likely that other states won’t be far behind once they see the success of Florida’s Association.

As leaders in agricultural lending, we are pleased to offer financial resources to the country’s ag operators when they consider starting an agritourism business or diversifying their farm with agritourism. We help the nation’s farmers and ranchers grow and expand with our loan products featuring low interest rates, long amortizations, and an outstanding 10-year line of credit.

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