16 December, 2021
Funding to grow QLD agritourism
FARMERS wanting to establish or expand their operations into agri-tourism can now apply for a grant to turn their ideas into reality.
The Queensland Farmers’ Federation has partnered with the State Government to deliver the Queensland Agri-tourism Grants program, offering a 50 per cent co-contribution up to a maximum of $25,000 to match farmers’ funds.
Federation CEO Dr Georgina Davis said Queenslanders were increasingly looking to explore their own backyard through unique, authentic experiences that immerse them in rural and regional communities.
“Limited only by imagination, agri-tourism includes overnight accommodations and farmstays, direct sales of fresh or value-added products, recreational and educational experiences, demonstrations and displays, farm tours and hands-on experiences including participating in agri-processing activities such as cheese making,” Dr Davis said.
“Providing opportunities for farmers to grow their businesses, agritourism creates new and alternative markets for produce, and an opportunity to gather valuable feedback from consumers.
“However, there are relevant considerations including safety, animal welfare and biosecurity, land-use planning and other regulatory requirements, business structures, succession plans and tax implications.
“These grants will assist farmers to establish or expand into agritourism by employing professional or specialist services or constructing or modifying on-farm infrastructure in line with these important factors, allowing them to play a positive role in growing sustainable tourism.”
Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Minister Mark Furner said agri-tourism was an important growth industry for Queensland’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It will be especially important in regional and rural areas over the next decade with an estimated value of $4.5 billion by 2030,” Mr Furner said.
“There is so much untapped potential, with many farming enterprises already looking to diversify their operations and supplement their income through farm gate sales, pick-your-own fruit and veggies visits, interacting with farm animals, farmto- table dining, farmers markets, on-farm cooking classes and farm tours.”
Grants are open to eligible Queensland farmers to develop, implement and expand agri-tourism activities.
Applications for grant funding close 10 January, 2022. Further information on how to apply is available at: https://qff.grantplatform.com