Know How / Diversification

The income generated by diversification is a vital component of many farming businesses – but it can involve unfamiliar planning, legal, staffing, plus health and safety issues.

This page offers tips and advice to guide you through your diversification journey. You’ll find information to help you to set up and run a thriving new enterprise on your farm.

Key areas of focus:

  • Inspirational farm diversification case-studies
  • Opportunities for grant support
  • Avoiding legal and tax pitfalls
  • Successful staff management
  • Business planning and marketing strategies

Case studies

See all


Video: How Icelandic yogurt adds value to a dairy farm

On-farm skyr production has raised the value of milk on a Skipton dairy unit to £1/litre. The change in direction at the 137ha (340-acre) dairy farm on the edge of…


Becoming a trainer provides extra income stream for farmers

The squeeze on farm profits has driven the search for alternative incomes. Farmers becoming training instructors is one option that can help provide extra income. A dire safety record for…


FW diversification award winners plot business expansion

After winning in the midst of a global pandemic, Alison and Fergus Younger of Old Leckie Farm have gone from strength to strength in their quest for sustainability and self-sufficiency.…


How a dairy farm is using a straw dryer to reduce waste

Farmer Jonny Wyatt is using waste heat from the anaerobic digester (AD) plant on his mixed farm near Thetford, Norfolk, to dry out-of-spec straw to make drier bedding for his…


Dairy farm diversifications attract new custom

Farmers have been industrious during the pandemic, launching diversifications and adding value to their core products.  Farmers Weekly spoke to two farming families who have done just that. One has…


Regen farmer seeks businesses to form sustainable community

Regenerative farmer Tim May is launching an ambitious project to bring more businesses onto Kingsclere Estate to build a community where each enterprise helps regenerate the land, reduces waste and…

Practical advice

See all


So you want to… hold car boot sales on your farm?

Car boot sales can be a profitable diversification for farms that are in the right location, but they come with multiple rules, regulations and other considerations. Just as charity shops…


Farmers warned to check tax implications of on-site events

Farmers who host revenue-raising on-farm events risk losing VAT and inheritance tax advantages. Summer events ranging from a modest gathering such as a garden party, to a music festival, can…


So you want to... start producing venison?

New opportunities exist for commercial deer farming in the UK after a commitment by major retailers to source all own-label venison from British producers. Waitrose and Marks & Spencer previously…


What's the outlook for farm-based staycations in 2022?

Staycations are predicted to remain a popular holiday choice in 2022, despite international travel becoming much easier this year as Covid-19 restrictions ease. According to research carried out by VisitBritain…


So you want to...offer PYO flowers

Although pick your own (PYO) has typically focused on soft fruit, there is now good customer demand for flowers too. We ask how you can go about setting up a…


Pick-your-own pumpkins offer diversified income channels

The market for pumpkins in the UK has seen a huge growth in the past decade, with the public increasingly looking for an on-farm experience and to buy directly from…


See all


High prices create opportunity for renewable energy contracts

Sharp rises in gas and electricity prices may have been unwelcome for most, but for those generating renewable energy, it has increased potential returns from electricity sales.  Prices are very…


Video: How farm shops are filling the supermarket supply gap

Farm shops have always played a crucial role within rural communities, offering fresher, better-quality produce to support local farmers while reducing food miles. Since the first Covid-19 lockdown in March…


12 steps to improve marketing of a staycation venture

Whether it is glamping, camping, holiday lets, B&Bs or pop-up campsites, a diversification into the leisure sector needs visitors. Here, Savills tourism and leisure director Simon Foster, FarmStay chairwoman Kay…


Farmshops continue to #FeedTheNation as lockdown eases

Farm shops are predicting a positive future, with early indications suggesting new customers who turned to them in lockdown are remaining loyal. Turnover is up on pre-Covid-19 levels at Newlyns…


Land with forestry potential sees unprecedented prices

Hill farms and bare land with the potential for planting trees have achieved unprecedented prices due to competitive bidding from commercial forestry investors. This rise in demand was the biggest…


Exclusive survey: 97% farms find diversification profitable

Ingenuity, drive, skill and hard work are all clear to see in the results of Farmers Weekly’s diversification survey, carried out in association with Carter Jonas.  A vast range of…


5 minutes with... Diversification award winners the Moretons

It's been a whirlwind few months for the Farmers Weekly Award winners – 15 extraordinary farmers, advisers, contractors and farmworkers who last year received one of farming's highest accolades recognising…