With the economy continuing to struggle, Americans have been looking for additional ways to supplement their income. Some of those with farms have been turning to agritourism to give themselves a boost.
According to The New York Times, many farmers have been opening up their properties to tourists in order to protect their incomes and increase their self-sufficiency.
Jim Maguire operates a small dairy farm in California. He recently started a bed-and-breakfast, commonly known as a farm stay, on his property.
“The whole idea is to get the farm in a productive state so that it carries itself, so that it pays its own way,” Maguire told the news source. “The farm stay is an important economic portion of that.”
According to Maguire, the income from the two rooms he rents out is enough to pay for all of the feed for his animals.
Bed-and-breakfasts aren’t the only way that farmers have tapped into the agritourism industry, The Times reports. Many operate corn mazes and other attractions like petting zoos to help make themselves more self-sufficient.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, in 2007 agritourism brought in an average of $24,300 for each household involved in the industry.