October 3, 2023
LANSING, MI Governor Gretchen Whitmer today proclaimed October as Agritourism Month in Michigan to celebrate and honor agritourism's economic and social benefits to our state's farms and communities. Autumn trips to farms, wineries, farm markets, cider mills, and other agritourism businesses offer an excellent opportunity to enjoy all Michigan offers while supporting family farms, small businesses, and rural communities across the state.
"This October, we're celebrating Agritourism Month in Michigan by acknowledging all the hardworking family farmers, processors, wholesalers, and retailers who produce safe, nutritious food for us to eat and offer us unique fall experiences," said Governor Whitmer. "I encourage every Michigander to take some time this fall to enjoy our state's unparalleled agritourism industry and get a taste of Pure Michigan—check out a cider mill, stroll through a corn maze, and continue purchasing fresh, delicious produce."
Agritourism is defined as places where agriculture and tourism connect, including any time a farming operation opens its doors to the public inviting visitors to enjoy their products and services. Agriculture and tourism are leading economic drivers in Michigan. Agritourism offers farmers a path to diversification of their businesses to include value-added products and activities, which helps them better withstand things like poor weather conditions and market fluctuations.
"Here in Michigan, our agricultural systems are enhanced by resiliency and diversity, which includes creating agritourism opportunities allowing Michiganders to further connect with agriculture and where their food comes from," said Director Tim Boring, Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Director. "Agritourism offers farmers a path to diversification of their businesses including value-added products and activities like corn mazes, pumpkin patches and more. Join me as we celebrate our farmers, agriculture and the connection with our dynamic tourism industry."
"Agritourism is such an important part of Michigan s agricultural economy. It helps family farms stay sustainable by providing farmers with new and diverse revenue streams, and it helps people gain an understanding and appreciation for agriculture through opportunities to experience the fun, the flavors and the beauty of Michigan farms," said Janice Benson, Executive Director of Michigan Agritourism.
Examples of agritourism include farmers markets, on-farm markets, wineries, roadside produce stands, on-farm weddings and events, corn mazes and much more. Agritourism is a year-round business for many farms in Michigan, but Agritourism Month is celebrated in October at the peak of harvest and during a time when people traditionally visit farms, pumpkin patches, and cider mills.