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NC State Extension

Taxes, Licensing, and Zoning

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This page provides discussion of various local licensing issues, including remittance (or exemption) from sales taxes for farms, required licensing (e.g., alcohol), and applicable zoning (including exemption as a bona fide farm).


Neighbor Complaints and Response: the Basics of North Carolina’s Right to Farm and Bona Fide Zoning. This narrative provides a distinction between the farm protection statutes of right to farm and bona fide farm zoning exemption, from the perspective of when authorities should respond to neighbor complaints about farming and land use.

Bona Fide Farm Zoning: NC Appeals Court Limits Agritourism DefinitionThis case review illustrates a North Carolina Court’s approach to defining the term “agritourism.”

Administrative Law: Exhaustion Required for Administrative Bona Fide Farm DeterminationThis case review reinforces the route zoning appeals must take with the county zoning department before reaching court.


The Bona Fide Farm ExemptionThis presentation puts an emphasis on the distinction and connection of exemptions and qualifications for the Bona Fide Farm Exemption, including PUV, qualifying farmer certificate, and use of the Schedule F.

Tax Concepts for Livestock OwnersThis presentation was made to the Person County Cattlemen’s Association meeting in February 2022. It covers basic farm tax concepts, income reporting and depreciation under the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, along with an update on estate and gift taxes.

Zoning, Building Permits, and the Bona Fide Farm. This presentation was made to the Western NC Agritourism Curriculum, August 2020.

Basic Farm Regulation and Liability. This presentation scratches the surface of basic farm regulation, including land use, zoning, food safety, and sales and property taxes.

Sales Taxes.This presentation covers which farm products are subject to sales tax, as well as the farmer’s sales tax exemption certificate issued by NCDOR.

Regulation of On-Farm ProcessingThis presentation covers the very basics of regulation of on-farm processing, including exemption limits.


Content loaded to Agricultural and Natural Resource Law portal, including narratives, workbooks and presentations, is supported by The North Carolina Tobacco Trust Fund Commission (TTFC) (Grant award 2019-001-16).