Agritourism (the practice of touring agricultural areas to see farms and participate in farm activities) is a growing activity in Massachusetts and New England. Agritourism offers an opportunity for public education about where food is derived from, interactions with animals, and sampling of farm products. Under certain circumstances, agritourism has been associated with gastrointestinal disease outbreaks among attendees.
While most agritourism does not result in disease, there are ways in which both the venue and the public can make this activity safer. The United States Department of Agriculture and the State Departments of Agriculture of MA, Ct, and RI are hosting a day-long workshop on August 22nd aimed at the owners of agritourism venues.
In order to ensure the appropriate audience, please do not broadly announce to the public but please feel free to distribute to farm venues in your town that might benefit from this workshop.