Challenges for the agritourism sector in the United States
Regional comparisons of access
Keywords:Agritourism, Challenges, Ordinal Regression, Five Dimensions of Access, Liability, Regulation, E-connectivity, Food System, Rural Tourism, Rural Development
Agritourism has become a popular pursuit for farms and ranches in the United States, aiming to diversify revenue sources and meet agricultural education and community-building goals. However, there has been limited research around the challenges experienced by operators and limited access to resources that can help address these challenges. This article fills that gap in knowledge by examining the challenges agritourism operations currently face in the Northeast, Midwest, South, and West regions of the U.S. In this study, we use a mixed-methods approach to the Five Dimensions of Access framework developed by Penchansky and Thomas (1981). We operationalize their model in an ordinal probit regression to analyze data from a national survey of agritourism operators, analyzed by region. Results from the quantitative analysis are substantiated using qualitative, open-ended comments from the same survey. The analyses show that agritourism operators encounter different challenges according to their region. We find that operators in most regions of the United States are concerned about agritourism liability. However, states in the West region experience more challenges with regulations, zoning, and permitting, while operators in the South have more problems with e-connectivity. These results can be applied in three ways: support services for agritourism, policy and regulations, and future research.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Weiwei Wang, Chadley Richard Hollas, Lisa Chase, David Conner, Jane Kolodinsky
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