Factors Influencing the Adoption of Agritourism among Small Farmers in Tennessee
Farms in the United States of America (USA) come in a variety of different sizes, and the size of the farm has great influence on the business opportunities of the agricultural establishment. The opportunities of a farm can not only greatly affect the owners, but also people of the community in which it resides. Around 90% of the farms in the USA are small, which have annual gross farm income of less than $350,000. Small farms have great disadvantages in the number of resources and financial opportunities in comparison to large farms. Their operators must think of ways to enhance their agricultural operations to increase the longevity of their enterprises, which are subject to survival risks. Agritourism could be one of the viable on-farm strategies for risk management and stable income of small farms. The objectives of this study are to assess the characteristics and attributes of agritourism participating small farms in Tennessee, and to analyze the factors that influence farm households’ decisions to participate in agritourism activities. To gather data, we administered a survey among small farm operations across the state of Tennessee. We used an appropriate statistical test comparing adopter and non-adopter farms and probit regression model to estimate decision model. We discussed the statistical test results assessing adopter and non-adopter differences across several attributes. Our decision model suggests that the social media, smartphone usage, hired labor, off-farm work, farm insurance, and perceived risk significantly influence the adoption of agritourism on small farm operation. The results and conclusions will help to advance understanding of future success of small farms and the communities. This study is expected to help develop and enhance alternative agricultural enterprises like agritourism to the benefit and well-being of farm families and communities. Those who make agricultural policies will have a chance to increase their own understanding on the importance of agritourism and farm diversification, which can cause them to develop plans of action for small farms in the future.
"Factors Influencing the Adoption of Agritourism among Small Farmers in Tennessee"
ETD Collection for Tennessee State University.