NSW Government announce new rules to support agritourism
The NSW Government has announced it is making it easier for farmers to start, run and grow agritourism experiences, such as farm stays, cafes, cellar doors, retreats, roadside stalls, fruit picking and small wedding venues.
They are doing this by introducing clear definitions for agritourism and simplifying planning pathways to allow these activities to happen.
The reforms will help landowners build their resilience and recover faster from the pandemic and natural disasters, by providing another source of income. The changes will also support the tourism economy by tapping into the growing interest in farm experiences and farm-to-plate produce.
What is changing?
NSW Government are introducing clear definitions for agritourism in NSW.
The new and amended terms include:
Farm gate premises – where visitors interact with produce from the farm, such as via fruit picking, sales, tastings, workshops and cafes.
Farm experience premises – where visitors can experience life on a farm including via tours, horse riding, weddings, functions and retreats.
Farm stay accommodation – where visitors can stay in buildings or moveable dwellings, including tents and caravans, on a farm.
New planning pathways will allow these activities to happen with either fast-track approval (complying development) or no planning approval (exempt development), with development standards they must meet to minimise impacts on neighbours, rural roads and the community.
If an activity doesn’t meet the standards for exempt or complying development, landowners should speak with their council about lodging a development application.
The changes will commence on 1 December 2022.
The new rules will apply on most of rural zoned land. NSW Government are working with councils to determine additional zones that may be appropriate for agritourism. Updates to councils’ local environmental plans will be made in early 2023 to ensure agritourism is permitted in the right places.
Please direct questions about the agritourism reforms, to: E: firstname.lastname@example.org