While there are hundreds of thousands of ways to make money on the farm, we’re just going to cover 11 ways to make money on the farm. Why eleven? I really don’t know, it just seemed like a good number as I sit here and watch the snow come down. UGH – snow.
Here’s the short list, I’ll go into a little more detail about each one further down:
- Fresh eggs
- Baked goods
- Fresh cut flowers
- Sewing, crochet, knitting
- Woodcrafts or woodworking
- Baby chicks or pullets
So, how are these ways to make money on the farm? Some of these are pretty basic things that you can get anywhere right?! NO! You can’t just get these things anywhere – you get them from your farmer.
Let’s look a little further into each one of these.
Eggs – we sell eggs, lots of eggs. Depending on the breed of chicken, you can get green, brown, or white eggs. We also have ducks, duck eggs are phenomenal. Fresh farm eggs sell for anywhere from $4 to $10 a dozen.
Baked goods – oh the possibilities! This is an endless option here. A word of caution, check with your states food and agriculture department and see what regulations they may have. Fortunately, we live in Utah and are one of the few states that have a “food freedom bill” in force. This means that we can legally sell foods direct to the consumer. (HUGE shout out to Red Acre Farm for pushing that for local farmers.) We also have a cottage kitchen permit which allows us to sell retail in stores.
Lions and tigers and bears – not really…. milk and cheese
Milk – if you have milking critters (we do), you can in some states sell raw milk. Again, please check with your local state food and agriculture department on regulations. We can sell milk direct from the farm to consumer. Previously, (again thanks to Red Acre) could have a herdshare program in which you could “disperse” raw milk to the herdshare members. We currently have dairy goats and a family milk cow. Fresh milk sells anywhere from $10 – $22 a gallon.
Cheese. Oh the gloriousness (is that even a word?) of cheese… Same with milk sales, check local regulations. We currently make chevre (goats milk cheese) and a farmhouse cheddar made from goats milk. When Gigi is in milk, we will expand that to fresh mozzarella, cheddar, ricotta, and various other cheeses. Mr. Clucking It Up may have to construct a cheese house for me.
Do you have bees? Do you want bees? You should have bees! Honey is a big way to make money on the farm. When you have bees, you have honey, beeswax, proplis. You also have instant pollinators for your fruit trees, crops and flowers. Raw honey sells for $4 to $120 depending on the amount of honey in each container. It also brings in more dollarosas if you include a slice of honey filled wax in each jar.
Remember those bees…use those bees to pollinate your vegetable crops!
Vegetables direct from the farmer is an excellent way to make money on the farm. People LOVE to know their local farmer. They want to hear farm stories and see how you do things. Real food is becoming a real thing – we’re tired of eating out of boxes and the freezer sections. People want fresh, red, ripe, juicy tomatoes.
Flowers – who doesn’t love a fresh bouquet of flowers? We’re working on incorporating more and more this season. Flowers are happy and they make your home happy. Or in other cases, they can be a big apology. Whichever case it is, flowers are a pretty good way to make someone feel good.
Sewing, crochet, knitting… if you can do any of these (or all of these), this is a GREAT way to make money. Alterations are booming (especially at the beginning of the year when everyone one is dieting). Even if you can sew simple projects, re-usable grocery bags, unpaper towels, that list can literally go on and on and on. Hand crochet or knitted blankets and afghans. Not that experienced? Try beanies, face scrubbies, ear warmers, scarves, hot pads – another endless list. People want to know their crafters and makers.
Woodworking, woodcrafts – are you handy with a hammer, nail gun or a drill? Do you have access to ANY reclaimed wood? Wood projects are always a hit at markets and craft shows. There’s so much character and personality in each piece. Depending on the piece, size and uniqueness it can bring you anywhere from $5 to $1,000’s. So, give it a shot. (Just be careful.)
Have you ever thought about teaching?
Farm classes are great ways to make money on the farm. Classes be taught about absolutely EVERYTHING. We are beginning our education series and our first class will be how to make goats milk soap from start to finish. Some classes we intend to include: beginner crochet, soil blocking, chicken processing, canning, pickling, pasta making, beginner cheese making and whatever else pops into our funny little heads. Class costs are super variable $20 to $180 per class per person.
Peep, peep, chick chick – probably the cutest way to bring in extra money. When you order your chicks for fresh eggs, always order extras. Sell extra chicks as chicks or raise them to pullet size (just before they start laying eggs). Specialty breeds can bring in a higher price. If you’re serious about your chickens, you can go all in and incubate your own eggs and sell your hatchlings. Chicks can price out between $3 and $7. Pullets depending on breed can bring in anywhere between $10 and $17.
Again, there are literally thousands of ways to make money on the farm. I suggest that you do what you like. Use what you have. Most of all, enjoy yourself. Check with your local food and ag departments and make sure you can do some of these, we wouldn’t want you to get into trouble.