Getting Started in Agriculture
Agriculture is the largest industry in
New York State, third largest industry in Dutchess County. Primarily our
farms are smaller in size from an historical point of view. A large
part of this change is due to the reduction of
dairy farming and conventional larger
farms and points to the increase in diversified farming operations (p.
2015 Dutchess County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan).
play a critical role in the success of an agricultural business.
Dutchess County has a host of many Prime and Statewide Important
Agricultural soils (The Soils of Dutchess County).
The First Five Steps of Getting Started in Agriculture
- Ensure that the soils on a potential agricultural site
are appropriate for the proposed operation. The Dutchess County Soil and Water Conservation District (DC SWCD) offers soil
mapping for a fee or the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service Web Soil Surveycan be used.
- If you have any technical questions about starting an
agricultural business or unsure about what type of venture you would like
to start, please consider starting with Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County and they will help you with the process and direct you to more
specific procedural personnel such as:
- Check to see if your property is in an Agricultural District
through Dutchess County Parcel Access. If it is not yet enrolled, all applications for the Annual
Inclusion must be submitted to DC SWCD between April 15th and
- If you have no plans to do the farming yourself, either
contact the current farmer or contact the Ag Navigator to assist you in finding
the appropriate match for your situation.
- Draft a business plan for your property as well as a marketing plan.
Even a rudimentary plan can help develop a farm business. We can help
you get started.
PLEASE NOTE: If you plan to lease your land to a farmer, understand
that the reduction in your applicable land tax (Agricultural Assessment)
should be applied towards the whole or part of the farmer's lease.
Last updated November 30, 2018