Abram Interstate Insurance Services, Inc., CMGA

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Hobby Farms On The Rise | Farm & Ranch Insurance Product Highlight

Published on May 23, 2017

Between hipsters and hippies, millenials and retirees, stay-at-home moms and DIY-ers, America is coming back to its locally-grown, hand-made, highly agricultural roots — even in cities.

In the past 5-10 years there has been a huge up-tick in the number of people who are interested in trying their hand at raising their own livestock, growing their own food, or making a little money on the side with other ag endeavors.

A hobby farm, by definition (and for IRS purposes), is a small farm or agriculture endeavor that is run primarily for pleasure or supplemental income, rather than as a primary source of income.

Hobby farming has always been an aspect of the California ag industry, but according to a recent New York Times article, experts say it’s a growing trend:

Some experts say hobby farms are on the rise. “We have definitely seen a resurgence in some forms of farming, some of it hobby farming,” said Ken Pellman, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Department of Agricultural Commissioner, Weights and Measures.

Donna Johanson, who lives in Camarillo, started out as a hobby farmer but has become something more: an entrepreneur. She bought two goats to source raw milk for her family’s six-acre home in 2004 and eventually started to experiment with goat milk soap in her kitchen. Now she runs Chivas Skin Care, which she founded with her daughter in 2009. Chivas has goat milk soap products in 85 stores nationwide and sold more than 25,000 bars of soap in 2014.

Johanson, who bought an additional, one-acre farm in Fillmore in 2010, has a menagerie that includes 12 goats, 9 chickens, three pigs, three tortoises and an 8-month-old Red Angus calf named Diva.

“I don’t want to sugarcoat things. We still work on the side. We are still growing,” Johanson said. “But I love my animals, and I never get tired of it because it always feels like Easter to me.”

Other hobby farmers echo her enthusiasm: “I live in the city,” Hoeflinger said, “but when I am at home, it’s like we live in the country.”

And California is a hotbed for these new hobby farms and farmers.

According to HobbyFarms.com, California is the third best state to start a farming venture, hobby or otherwise:

With a temperate climate and growing conditions that accommodate a variety of crops and livestock, it’s no surprise that the cost of land in California averages $7,300 per acre. Despite that, there are more than 80,500 farms across the state producing 400-plus commodities and nearly half of the fruits, nuts and vegetables grown in the U.S., according to the California Department of Agriculture.

In 2013, California passed the Urban Agriculture Incentive Zones Act to increase the amount of vacant and private land used for urban agriculture by offering reductions in property taxes and to expand its agricultural reach even further.

However, many hobby farming operations, while taking place on personal property, are not covered by homeowners insurance. These people, who are bringing our society back to its roots, they need the proper hobby farm insurance coverage. And you can get it for them through Abram Interstate.

TIP: Our wholesale Hobby Farm Insurance has the best hit ratio with equine, orchards, and vineyards.

Farm & Ranch Insurance Product Highlights:

Available in AZ, CA, CO, ID, MT, NM, NV, OR, UT, WA, WY
Carriers: A+ Rated Admitted
  • Farm/Ranch Package – Property & Liability coverage for working horse, cattle and crop farms. This includes the insured’s dwelling(s), barns, outbuildings, machinery, hay, tack and other similar items.
  • Commercial & Personal Equine Liability – Boarding, breeding, training, lessons, clinics, sales or personally owned horses.
  • Care, Custody, Control – protects the Insured for injury or death to a non-owned horse while in their care. This coverage can be included as part of the farm/ranch package policy.
  • Excess/Umbrella – Increased liability limits are available on this policy.
  • Business Auto – Coverage for the insured’s automobiles. Available only if the supporting farm/ranch package is written by the carrier.

Submit your Hobby Farm Risks HERE Now!


Abram Interstate Insurance Services, Inc. is a California wholesale insurance broker (CMGA) that has licensing and expertise to place business in both admitted and non-admitted markets for Personal Lines Insurance, Commercial Lines Insurance, and Agribusiness Insurance in California and surrounding areas.

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