What is agritourism?
Agritourism is defined as "The act of visiting a working farm or any agricultural, horticultural, or agribusiness operations for the purpose of enjoyment, education or active involvement in the activities of the farm or operation."
Why is agritourism important to Kentucky farmers?
As Kentucky tobacco farmers move forward in the post-tobacco quota buyout economy, many aspects of the agricultural landscape have changed. No longer is there a guaranteed market for the producer who raised tobacco. Many tobacco producers in Kentucky have either quit raising tobacco or greatly reduced the amount of tobacco that they raise. These producers are looking for ways to make up for that lost tobacco income. Agritourism venues and events can provide additional income to farmers and the rural communities that they live in. Agritourism is not a replacement for tobacco, but it can be a means of earning supplemental income that can help preserve and sustain family farms. Agritourism is one way to "add value" to existing agricultural assets such as crops, livestock and the natural resources that the farm has to offer.
Why is agritourism important to local tourism?
Agritourism offers an opportunity to build relationships between the agricultural community and the local tourism industry by incorporating tour groups, educating school children and hosting civic events. This increases rural economic development dollars in areas with agritourism venues. The ultimate goal of an agritourism venue is to increase net farm income by filling customer needs for education and recreation on the farm.
Why is agritourism important to all Kentucky citizens?
Today most Kentuckians have no direct connection to farm life, even in rural areas. Agritourism gives people an opportunity to better understand the skill and hard work that go into producing the food and fiber we all enjoy. It's also a chance for great food and clean country fun at destinations that are close to home.