How timber buildings fit in the farm diversification trend?
A TIMBA BUILDING COULD LOOK AMAZING AS A CAFE, A RECEPTION CABIN, A PETTING ZOO FEED SHOP, FARM SHOP, LOO BLOCK … THE LIST IS ENDLESS, A TIPI DOESN’T JUST HAVE TO BE ACCOMMODATION.
The following blog post is taken from the Farm Business Innovation Shows’ Website and is linked by clicking anywhere on this article.
Timber buildings are not an uncommon view on a classic livestock or crop farm, but what happens when farmers decide to diversify? Does the need for timber buildings go away? Quite the contrary, but to find out why this is the case you will have to read a bit further!
According to NFU, 65% of farms in England have diversified, and 48% of farmers is planning to set up or expand their diversification enterprises. There are multiple ways in which farmers can increase their revenue via diversification which guarantees various usage options for timber buildings – from offices, to glamping accommodation to stables.
The most obvious way to diversify a piece of land is to set up a glamping site, and coincidentally it is also the easiest to sell timber buildings to. Although there are unique glamping sites that utilise planes, busses, ufos and other quirky structures, for the most part glamorous camping locations use timber pods or tents on their land. Diversifying farmers can usually fit four and more glamping pods on their land, so it is highly unlikely that a diversifying landowners will stop with one pod.
Now it would be rather uncomfortable to greet guests sitting in a plastic chair by a foldable table without a roof over one’s head, so it is safe to assume that most of those newly established glamping sites will need a reception area and the best option for most of them are garden offices. They look great, they blend in with the timber pods well and are easily removable which can be an advantage when it comes to submitting a planning application.
Since we’re on the topic of timber office buildings, there is another use for them in quite a different branch of diversification. Petting zoos are consistently ranked as one of the best diversification ideas and they are gaining popularity among entrepreneurial landowners. To set it up they will need more than just fencing and animal food.
If you look around, most petting zoos out there have an on site food service facility available for the guests, usually located in a small timber building or a garden office if it’s a smaller site. But that’s not the only use for timber buildings in petting zoos, the animals need shelters so there is a need for timber structures of all shapes and sizes.
But many farmers tackle diversification from quite a different direction and instead turn into artisanal producers. It often turns out that the best way to sell their artisanal cheeses, meats or ice creams is to sell them in their own farm shops and so they either need to do a barn conversion or invest in a larger timber building to fit a kitchen and a few tables.
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