Thinking of starting an agricultural business? Looking for farming ideas to make money? Here are the most profitable agricultural business start-up ideas for entrepreneurs – complete with links on how to start your farm.
Lots of good business ideas with low investment startup costs such as worm farming and growing mushrooms commercially. Plus beginner ideas for agriculturally minded entrepreneurs such as selling at farmers’ markets and lawn care maintenance.
Continue reading to get your best and most profitable small farming business idea to start growing your own lucrative business:
Farming Business Ideas
Farms come in all sizes from small boutique specialty farms to vast agricultural enterprises. Crops of all types are in demand need to be grown by farmers. These are the most profitable things to grow and sell.
With the advent of healthy eating, many fine restaurants and gourmet specialty shops want to purchase locally grown salad lettuce referred to as microgreens. How to start a microgreen business.
Dependent upon your climate and the amount of your agricultural land, you could grow crops of all types from vegetables to fruits and flowers. In my local area, the most profitable farms grow Brussel sprouts, apples, strawberries and tomatoes.
If you have a large amount of land you can grow sod grass turf. This can be an especially lucrative market if you sell to school districts for sports fields, golf courses for putting greens or landscapers to install in suburban homes.
One of the fastest-growing and most lucrative business opportunities in farming is in organics. No longer are Organics only sold in health food stores. These days all supermarkets have a dedicated organic produce section. Often you can charge more for organic produce than traditionally grown crops. Things you need to know when starting an organic farm.
CSA Program – Community-supported agriculture
By using your own farm’s crops or those of a co-op of local growers you can develop a buyers club called a CSA. People purchase shares of your harvest which they pay for at the beginning of the season and then each week receives a portion of your produce at harvest time. This has been a very popular and profitable business model for farmers near me. It can be expanded into other products including eggs, flowers, and meat. One of our local organic farms sold the shares to neighborhoods a few hours away and delivers orders weekly.
You could grow herbs for medicinal uses, beauty treatments or for culinary purposes. A friend of mine owns a highly profitable business of selling herb starts (small herb plants) to local garden retail centers that sell them to home gardeners. He even sells to our local Walmart! Medicinal herbs can be sold wholesale or direct to consumers online. Additionally, you do not need to grow all of the medicinal herbs yourself. You could purchase many varieties to offer a full complement on your website or in your store.
What are the most popular crops is the floral herb is lavender. It is used in fragrances, cooking and for herbal medicine treatments and is an ornamental plant. Near me there are two lucrative lavender farms that offer tours and sell a full range of lavender products. Their best-sellers are soaps, dried lavender, and lavender honey. They also make money renting out their lavender farm to photographers for bridal and fashion photoshoots.
Tree and Shrub & Perennial Farming
You could use your land to grow trees, plants, and shrubs for home gardens. You could retail directly to consumers or sell wholesale to local garden centers. Research selling to municipalities and large landscaping firms because they could buy large bulk orders.
There are a few tree farms in my region. Their advantage is that they sell trees well acclimated to our local climate. This ensures that the home gardener has good results at their home with the replanted tree and shrubs. A related idea would be to grow perennials plants. You could propagate these plants in greenhouses or in the soil dependent upon your plant variety and local climate. How to start a permaculture nursery and tree farm.
Christmas Tree Farm
The Christmas tree market is seasonal and highly profitable. Due to the hardy nature of pine trees, there is less regular maintenance and operating cost.
If your state has legalized hemp cultivation this could be an excellent crop to farm. The advantage of hemp growing is that it grows more vigorously than corn, but requires less water, pesticides, and fertilizer which makes it a profitable and sustainable crop. Hemp can be used for livestock feed, biofuel production, paper, and textiles.
Additionally, hemp seeds and the oil produced from them have many culinary, health and industrial uses. One of the best money-making industries that hemp farmers are profiting from is the production of CBD oil. This is an oil that is medicinal and is legal in all 50 US states. Learn how to start a hemp farm.
You could specialize in the design and construction of professional greenhouses. Commercial growers and garden enthusiasts want to purchase these types of building services.
Landscape Masonry – Paths, Fireplaces, and Pools
Deck Builder – Fences, Gazebo, and Arbors
Indoor Agricultural Business Ideas
Mushroom farming is a great money maker and it only takes a few weeks to get started. Read this guide on how to grow mushrooms commercially as a profitable small-scale farmer.
Vermiculture is the process of farming worms. There are many types of products that worm production can create such as worm casings for organic fertilizers, worm tea for indoor plants, fishing bait worms, and earthworms for introducing into gardens to improve soil condition. Here is how to get started on worm farming for profit.
You can start a snail farm with an outdoor pen or breed snails indoors. The market is growing and you can profit nicely from selling specialty snails to fine restaurants. Here is all the information you need on how to start farming snails.
Indoor Agriculture Resources
Animals are an important part of the farming agricultural business model. In addition to traditional farm livestock such as cattle and pigs, there are many new agricultural business ideas for breeding and selling animal such as:
Goats have a low mortality rate, are comfortable in colder climates and are generally quite healthy. Goat farming has many revenue sources such as breeding and goats, selling goats for meat, milk, and producing goat cheese. Additionally, you could make goat milk soap and lotions to sell to wholesale, locally or online. Goat farming business plan for beginners.
Sheep farmers make money both by selling sheep’s wool and animals for human consumption.
Rabbits are famously rapid breeders making for a quick and profitable business idea. Rabbits can be sold for pets or to specialty breeders. Practical tips for starting a rabbit farm.
Breeding of fowl both for consumption and egg production is a good agricultural business idea. You could specialize in particular breeds such as Cornish game hens, quail for eggs or pheasants. This increases your profits and differentiates yourself from other poultry breeders.
Grab a part of the billion-dollar pet industry by breeding animals on your farm. Among the most popular pets to breed are dogs, cats, snakes, guinea pigs and pet birds. Learn about the best and most profitable dog breeds here.
Exotic Animal Farms
Exotic animals can be interesting and fruitful livestock to breed. In demand, animals include llamas, snakes, and ostriches.
With the reduction of wild bees, bee farming has become a big business. To create your honey bee business you could keep beehives, sell honey, honeycomb, beeswax, and bees. Additionally, you could provide pollination services for farmers or sell entire bee colonies. How to start a beekeeping business from scratch.
Raising butterfly eggs, caterpillars and butterflies is a fun and interesting hobby that you can develop into a gainful business. It is possible to raise butterflies indoors. I met an interesting entrepreneur who raised butterflies and then sent them to brides to release on their wedding day. This was an interesting twist on the standard tradition of a white dove release.
Agritourism Is a growing business growing at a rate of 12% annually and is estimated to reach 10$ billion in revenue in 2020. Locally many farmers are profiting from these types of tourist and agriculturally related business ideas.
- Farm Tours
- Farm Bed and Breakfast
- Education classes for Children and Gardeners
- Farm Internship
- Apple Picking (Pumpkin, Strawberry, etc)
- Country Fair Events
- Pumpkin Chucking
- Flower Fields – Sunflower or Lavender are the most popular
- Corn Mazes – Haunted for Halloween
- Petting Zoos
- Farm Food Festival – Garlic, Tomato or Blueberry tastings and cooking contests
The farm to table culinary movement has generated more interest in farm-fresh products. Buyers want to buy farm products both close to the farm field and to also meet the farmers. These ideas are ways to retail agricultural products as a living.
Start your own farmers market or rent a stall in a local one. You do not need your own land. Research setting up your market in a public park, or shopping centers with the landlord’s permission. Many retailers encourage local farmer’s markets because it brings people to the shopping center. In my town, a vacant furniture showroom serves as the indoor Saturday Farmers Market selling organic produce, specialty food products, and handcrafted items. How to start a farmers market.
Set up your own Farm Stand at your farm or home. This is especially good if you’re on a well-traveled road. Your farm stand can be as simple as your harvest placed on a table with a cash box or as complex as a fully stocked fruit and vegetable stand with other products such as home-baked goods. Add a seating area near your farm stand and serve beverages to attract many people to stop by and buy a slick of your pie and a cup of hot coffee.
Garden Retail Nursery
If you love gardening and know about growing plants you could open a garden center. Your garden center can sell perennials, annuals, fertilizer and decorative planters to local gardening enthusiasts.
Farm products such as pumpkins, gourds, decorative corn, and hay stocks are purchased around Halloween town for rustic home decoration. Additionally, you could expand into holiday greenery and Christmas trees.
Gourmet Food Products
Develop products based on your favorite recipes to serve with your farm produce products such as barbecue sauce, hot sauce, salad dressings, soups, and spice rubs.
Farm Fresh Baked Goods
Create delicious baked goods with your farm produce such as fruit pies, zucchini bread, pickles, relish, jellies, jams or gourmet popcorn. Sell these items at your farm stand, a local farmer’s market or wholesale to other food retailers. Check out these fun bakery name ideas.
Gardening is one of the top American Hobbies with people spending millions of dollars annually. The business opportunities are vast including these agricultural business ideas:
- Garden designer
- Landscape architect
- Garden installer
- Landscape Maintenance
- Lawn care, mowing fertilizing and thatching
- Indoor plant care – residences, businesses, and retail stores
- Deck Designer and Builder
- Planter Boxes – Custom built
- Hanging baskets creation
- Plant propagation
- Gardening Education – Teach homeowners, children program for schools
- Organic gardener advice
Garden and Landscape Resources
Americans spend over $35 billion dollars annually on floral products. As such there are lots of money-making business ideas for you to explore if you love flowers.
- Retail flower shop
- Florist Design Services
- Cactus arrangements
- Dried flowers and potpourri
- Teach classes on floral arranging
- Wedding floral services
- Artificial plants
- Silk flower decor
- Edible Bouquet Arrangements
- Balloon decorations
- Gift baskets sales
- Floral subscription service – weekly arrangements for businesses and retail stores
- Mobile florist – popular in cities and shopping centers.
Learn how to create cash flow from vacant land on my list of raw land business ideas here.
Floral Business Resources
Farm Supply & Distributor
Become a distributor for a nationally-known farm supply such as fertilizer, potting medium, soil amendments, fencing, chemicals and seeds. You could open a retail location or have a mobile business and travel to your customers.
Farm Business Consultant
All farmers are business people and need support, services, and advice to grow their companies. You could specialize in selling insurance, financial planning, loan financing or marketing services.
Farm Equipment Dealer
Another high-income business is to sell farm equipment such as tractors. There are opportunities to sell both new equipment or used items. Or you could specialize in being a farm mechanic to service and repair equipment. Also, there is money to be made in small engine repair which includes lawnmowers, rototillers, and weed whackers.
Trucking Delivery Transportation
Farmers need to deliver their goods to retail stores, distributors, and customers and you can start a trucking business to help them. Transporting large trees is a niche market that can be highly profitable. Checklist for starting a trucking business.
Aquaculture businesses generate a good amount of money. Fish consumption is increasing customer demand. Fish farming is advantageous because the start-up costs are fairly low. You could breed fish for tropical fish enthusiasts pets or farm fish for food consumption. This is just a sustainable business that you could start in your own backyard. Here’s a business plan on factors to consider before starting your fish farm.
Hydroponic Farms can be located in suburban or urban environments. You only need a few hundred square feet to start an indoor hydroponic farm which can produce food for hundreds of families. Your hydroponic farm can grow food or herbs. Alternatively, you could sell supplies to other hydroponic farmers, teach courses on how to grow hydroponically, and write a blog about hydroponic gardening.
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