Monday, 19 April 2010

Farming Today: This Week

Farming is a changeable business. Adapting to consumer demands and predicting future markets is never an easy task. To coin a phrase ‘farming aint what it used to be’.
Many farmers have to diversify, expanding their farm business in order to break even or hopefully make a profit. Some choose a more traditional diversification, bottling their own milk or selling ice cream. Others cash in on Farm Tourism.

All this week I’ve been lucky enough to help Radio 4’s Farming Today and the hot topic of the week has been Farm Tourism. Along with Producer Martin Poyntz-Roberts, Presenter Charlotte Smith and Select Committee Media Officer for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Hannah Pearce, I visited a farm in Leicestershire to see how they have utilised their farm.

Tourism has become extremely important to the Rural Economy, providing 400,000 jobs and worth 15 billion pounds a year. Jasper and Mary Hart have a selection of self-catering chalets and a campsite to bring in a regular income. There is a beautiful fishing lake and stunning views. But if it’s not peace and tranquillity you’re after do not worry. The other half of the farm is now and off road adventure playground. Quad bikes, 4x4’s and buggies are just some of the vehicles you can jump on and try your hardest at driving round the tough terrain track. Avalanche Adventure even provides clay pigeon shooting, archery and much more. So if you want a ‘staycation’ more than a vacation maybe you should have a browse at a potential Farm Stay.

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