GFP038: Agricultural Hospitality Through Farm Stays with Scottie Jones of Leaping Lamb Farm

A smart farmer looks for every way he or she can use what they already have on farm to help make the farm money. Farm Stays are a great way to use the infrastructure that you already have to increase your profits, diversify your income, and add a little more security. On my farm, the farm I am farm manager of, I have a little bit of start-up capital, but I still have to worry about making the most of what I have available to me. One of the assets to this property is that there is an old farm house that would be perfect for a Bed & Breakfast. Of course since the B&B is on a working farm, I have something to offer my guests that no other business in the area can, a farm.

Farming is the new "hip" thing to do. I know that bothers some of you. There are some fears that it may be a fad. Something that is here today, gone tomorrow. I don't think that's the case.

As I see it, there are two unique opportunities that you have with farm stays:

  1. As a farm you can capitalize on agriculture's current popularity.
  2. As a Farm Stay host you have the ability to nurture that popularity and ensure its longevity by providing a great experience to those who are interested.

Starting your own Farm Stay doesn't have to be expensive, and it doesn't have to be difficult. Scottie Jones joins us today to talk about how simple and how profitable it really is. It is a really good idea for farmers who don't already have good road frontage. Another way to get people to come to the farm.

Scottie is not only a great resource for farm stays, but she has created a great resource for farm stays. FarmStayUs.com is the website to go to if you're looking to register your farm and increase exposure.

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In this farm podcast you will learn:

  • How to get your farm started as a Farm Stay
  • The profit margins on a particular farm stay
  • How a Farm Stay can work in unison with your other farming ventures
  • What animals are best on wet pasture

Interview with Scottie Jones of Leaping Lamp Farm and FarmStayUs.com:

Farm Stay U.S. founder Scottie Jones and her husband Greg raise grass-fed lamb at Leaping Lamb Farm in the green hills of Oregon's Coast Range.  Since 2006 they have also operated a thriving farm stay, where they've hosted guests from near and far.

Scottie brings years of entrepreneurial experience to Farm Stay U.S., having been the Arizona franchisee for the socially-responsible British company, The Body Shop, and having worked in retail services and marketing at the Phoenix Zoo, where species survival and conservation were critical components of zoo education.

Now through Farm Stay U.S., she hopes to provide an economic, educational, even spiritual bridge for rural and urban Americans eager to renew a healthier food and farm system, and access to memorable and wonderful guest experiences.

In her own voice: from KATU and Edible Portland

Items mentioned in this farm podcast include:

Take aways:

Is hospitality something you can bring onto the farm?

How can you fit Farm Stays into your current operation?

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My skills are ever-evolving as an interviewer. Thanks for taking the time to listen in, and let me know what you think. You can leave a comment below, send me an e-mail, reach me on Facebook or Twitter, or leave a 5 star rating in iTunes if you liked the show.