Hay rides, pumpkin patches, corn mazes and U-pick berry farms…what an idyllic way to spend a day or two off the beaten path and away from the hustle and bustle of traditional tourist attractions. With more and more farms and ranches opening their doors, gates and pastures to the public, agritourism is becoming much more than just a buzz word. Local goods, organic produce and heirloom seeds are now a part of our everyday shopping habits and emerging food choices. And many vacationers want to know more about how and where that food is produced.
Experiencing our nation’s agricultural heritage up close and personal through agritourism has become a celebration of America’s rural communities while introducing farm life to a new generation. In addition to the recreational and educational benefits for visitors, a growing agritourism business across the country helps farmers, ranchers and their families thrive and keep their businesses alive for future generations. From California to Vermont, farmers are using agritourism as an economic development tool in their communities.