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How to open a farmhouse: regulations, requirements and advice to start and manage a farm. Procedure to follow and permissions.
Have you ever thought of open a farmhouse? With farmhouse we mean a structure surrounded by greenery that allows guests to live in close contact with nature, to enjoy its products and to organize activities that allow a direct approach to the surrounding landscape.Open a farmhouse however it is not a prerogative granted to everyone.
How to open a farmhouse:necessary requirements
A farm can only be opened by anyone who is an agricultural entrepreneur (Article 2135 of the Civil Code), that is, anyone who practices agriculture or livestock as their main profession. A farm is therefore an activity carried out by an agricultural entrepreneur who offers tourists room and board, using his own products. It is necessary to have cultivated agricultural land that provides agricultural income. Only those who meet this condition can take ownership of the agritourism business.
L'agritourism activity it will always be connected and complementary to the agricultural one, which must in any case remain prevalent. In fact, it is the agricultural activity that mostly supplies the products used for catering on the farm.
Activities related to the agritourism:services to be offered to users
The agritourism activity includes includes various services. Here's what anyone can do manage a farm.
- To give hospitality in lodgings or in open spaces destined to stop campers.
- Provide meals and drinks consisting 'mainly' of own products and products from local farms.
- The owner must prefer typical products characterized by the DOP, IGP, IGT, DOC and DOCG brands or included in the national list of traditional agri-food products.
- Organize tastings of farm products.
- Organize recreational, cultural, educational, sporting activities, as well as hiking and horse-riding.
- The activities can also be carried out in agreement with local authorities and must be aimed at enhancing the territory and the rural heritage.
For these activities, surfaces can also be used outside the land assets that are available to the company.
How to open a farmhouse:procedure to follow and permissions
L'farmer must subscribe to the regional list of tour operators. Subsequently, it is necessary to ask the mayor of the city, where the agricultural properties are located, for authorization to start operating the business.
Furthermore, the healthiness of food products must be ensured by obtaining health authorization. Take care of waste disposal. Obtain the authorization of the fire brigade. Register with the Business Register of the Chamber of Commerce and open a VAT number.
How to open a farmhouse:rural structure and buildings
Only rural buildings already used for agricultural activity or as a farmer's home that have no more than thirty beds can be used as accommodation, with some exceptions regulated by regional laws. No other building is allowed, even if owned by the same farmer. In addition, new constructions are not possible, but only renovations or recoveries.
The farm can also be sustainable: it cannot help but equip itself with the most advanced technologies for energy saving such as solar panels and water tanks. Exist financing Italian and European for agritourisms, which must be added to the incentives for renewable energy for businesses.
How to start a farmhouse:regulations and financing
The rules they provide financing for the farm, start-up contributions and non-repayable money are contained in the regional laws for the farm itself.
If you are looking for info on funding to open a farmyou must contact the Region. All the regulations governing agritourism activities and related financing are largely governed by the Rural Development Programs (PSR) which is the most widespread financing instrument for agritourism.
These plans define a series of "priority axes", called general themes, which are flanked by the various "measures", ie specific interventions. The rules of access to contributions for the farm, to be launched or improved, and any subjective and objective requirements that give the right to priority, are indicated in the calls published by the Regions with reference to the allocation periods provided for by the EU financial forecasting framework.
Each Region acts and disposes according to different criteria. There is therefore no universal rule but only a general principle that is applied by the regions independently.
For this reason, those interested in starting a farm will do well to rely on the Regional or Provincial Category Associations, to receive specific information relating to each region. Associated companies can thus receive assistance in drafting projects for which they can request contributions according to individual cases.