Farm Business Innovation Show proves diversification key for future

NFU urges Gov to clarify regulatory environment post-Brexit
Credit: Shutterstock.com/ bondvit

Companies and organisations looking to diversify their farm or rural business are invited to attend the Farm Business Innovation Show at Birmingham NEC.

Diversity is the future of farming. More and more farms are looking at branching out into more than one area to establish multiple streams of income which will allow business to remain resilient in times where subsidies are falling and trade deals with the EU are up in the air.

A recent study by Farm Business Innovation revealed that out of almost 300 farmers and rural business owners polled, over 74% are more likely to diversify their land in response to Brexit, and this number is only going to grow as the realities of the current economic climate sink in.

Dairy farms are keeping bees, arable farmers are growing miscanthus in areas with poor soil and installing solar panels, sheep farmers are opening livery stables.

It’s not just farms either, all kinds of rural businesses are expanding their revenue streams. Landowners are opening glamping sites, estates are hosting rock concerts, large country houses are opening their doors as filming venues.

With the current uncertainty of how Brexit will play out for farmers and rural communities, rural business owners are quickly realising that diversification is the best was to remain stable and increase profits.

Diversification as a movement is increasing at such a rate that The Farm Business Innovation Show which runs November 8th & 9th at the NEC in Birmingham sold out the entire floor plan with six months to go until the show. The Event Director has had to increase the floor plan by taking an extra hall at the NEC to keep up with the demand, and with over 9,000 rural business owners attending the event, the additional stand space won’t last long.

While there is no denying that the world of farming is at a crossroads, this can either be seen as a problem or an opportunity. Being able to blend the old and the new, tradition and innovation are a huge part of what makes the UK such an amazing place and with rural enterprise at the backbone of the country, there is no reason that farming and rural business should not do the same.

Many farmers are turning just one field into something like a go kart track or paintball battlefield and turning enough profit from that to keep the rest of the traditional farm going.