NGALA’s business model is similar to a family farm in Napa Valley. In the Napa Valley tourists tour farms they can, for a price, engage in wine tasting. For an additional fee they can rent the winery for a wedding and/or a corporate affair where a licensed caterer could possibly provide fine cuisine and music. In Florida, instead of grapes and wine, one of our agricultural products is the exhibition of wildlife. This activity is expressly regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture.
NGALA Private Reserve is a wildlife preserve. Our daily activities consist of the traditional agricultural operations of raising, training, stabling, kenneling and breeding of exotic and domestic animals. At NGALA, tourists, (in the form of a group or a business), can, by appointment and paying a fee, rent our facility for a wedding or a corporate affair. This agricultural operation is also known as Agri-tourism, (the combination of Agriculture and Tourism), and is outlined and encouraged by the Natural Resource Conservation Service which is a division of The United States Department of Agriculture. Agri-tourism is also encouraged by Florida State Legislators. This form of land use adds dramatically to the community character, stimulates rural land preservation, supplements agricultural income and helps to control growth. The impact to the land and surrounding areas are minimal. As a matter of fact, as in the case of NGALA, most Agritourism operations have less impact than the land versus traditional agricultural farm activities.
Many United States farms are having a hard time competing with foreign countries and they are being forced to sell out. In Florida their land is being rapidly purchased by developers who quickly utilize it for a project. Although development provides a great economic impact for Florida it is often difficult for the government to stay ahead of free enterprise with infrastructure. This is sometimes referred to as ‘urban sprawl’. By encouraging Agri-tourism operations precious time is afforded, providing a use and income for the owner until they can decide whether to continue the operation or sell out, thus allowing substantial time for sensible growth management.
Agri-tourism provides NGALA with a way to conserve land in Collier County by providing an alternative opportunity to conduct wise land stewardship while at the same time provide sanctuary for magnificent creatures, stimulate the economy, educate in a fun and entertaining manner. This provides a financial vehicle for both the care and maintenance of the creatures that Tammy and Donovan Smith and their staff are committed to protect.