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Resources for alternative farming enterprises

Research to help when thinking of your next business idea

Thinking of using existing farm assets for a new business venture? Here are some resources to help get you thinking of a range of niche agricultural sectors you could explore.

The resources include examples of what others have done, links to trade and member organisations and much more.

Christmas trees

British Christmas Tree Growers Association

  • Membership organisation for those in this industry

Cut flowers (There are a number of paid for research papers within this sector, however the majority of the below are free to access)

The UK market from The Flowers and Plant Association

  • Insight into the UK cut flower market

The Flowers and Plants Association

  • UK’s promotional organisation for all commercially grown cut flowers and indoor plants

Flower and plant wholesaling in the UK; market research

  • Paid for research document from IBIS World

The British Cut Flower Business

  • Article prepared by The Great British Florist

Horticulture Week

  • Printed and online publication for the horticultural industry

AHDB Horticulture review of production statistics for the cut-flower and foliage sector 2015

Latest research from AHDB Horticulture

Publications from AHDB Horticulture

Ministry of Foreign Affairs trade statistics: Cut flowers and foliage

UK cut flower industry 2017

  • Downloadable PDF produced by ReportLinker

Horticultural Research Institute

The National Cut Flower Centre

  • A project funded by AHDB Horticultural for the benefit of the UK cut flower industry

The Flower Import Trade Association

NFU document Backing British Bloomers – June 2016

Flowers from the farm

  • Cooperative supporting small producers in the horticultural and floristry industry

Edible flowers


  • Online news site

Royal Horticultural Society

  • List of edible flowers

Maddocks Farm Organics

  • Producers of edible flowers based in Devon

The Edible Flower Shop

  • Advice on how to grow edible flowers

Lavender farms in the UK

The below are examples of those growing lavender for commercial use.

Elearning – Lavender production course

  • Run with ACS Distance Education

Alternative Crops

British Quinoa Company

AHDB Monitor Farms programme

Soya UK

  • Alternative UK grown crops and varieties – the largest supplier of Soy and Lupin seed in the UK


The Garlic Farm

Landowning initiative

  • Information on growing alternative crops

Premium Crops

  • Specialist arable merchant for the UK

Alternative livestock


British Deer Society

British Deer Farms and Parks Association

The Venison Advisory Service

  • Support and advice service to those looking to set up a commercial deer farm

Scottish Venison

SRUC research into the deer industry

  • Red deer – breeding and rearing to weaning/ finishing

UK Venison Red Deer Farming Enterprise

  • Importer of prime red deer stock for onward farming of venison in the UK

Meat Trades Journal

  • Website dedicated to the UK meat industry

The latest meat prices from Meat Trades Journal


The English Goat Breeders Association

British Goat Society

The British Boer Goat Society

The Rare Breeds Survival Trust

Delamere Dairy

  • Producers of a range of speciality dairy products

St Helen’s Farm

  • Producers of goat’s milk products based in Yorkshire


The Sheep Milk Company

  • Producers of sheep milk and cheese based in Lancashire

Top Paddock Sheep Dairy

The National Sheep Association

The British Milksheep Society

Farm diversification, diversification ideas, rural business, rural business ideas

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