Farm diversification is an increasingly common practice for farms and rural businesses around the world. In the face of increasing financial, environmental and market pressures, diversification offers the opportunity to spread income risk and build resilience.
Diversifying into a new enterprise or business activity can bring with it great reward but also great risk and, as with any new business venture, thorough planning and investigation is required. Choosing the most suitable form of diversification is a critical decision and is influenced by many factors and often involves significant financial outlay, development of new skills, access to new resources and most importantly an ability to create or respond to new market opportunities.
In order to better equip producers with information that will assist in the diversification decision-making process, the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) had a vision to create a 'diversification hub': The first-stop on the diversification journey for producers.
With a track record in the successful (and award-winning) delivery of the RIRDC website previously, Schuster Consulting Group was awarded the responsibility of making the vision real and once again teamed up with Vivid Group using the Sitefinity platform to deliver.
The outcome; an easy to use 'engine' that allows producers to search crop and animal production enterprise alternatives by type or location to discover which may be best suited to their farm. Advanced search options include narrowing search results by rainfall, soil type, existing enterprises and climate zone.
Users are able to review suitable options in more detail, including information about where it is currently produced, where it could be produced, production requirements, marketing options and further resources available.
Overall, the site aims to inspire producers thinking about what might be possible and set them on their diversification journey.