The article deals with the problem of self-supplying farms, which account for two-fifths of all private farms operating in Poland. It is estimated that approximately 10% of the country's population is linked to self-supplying farms. These farms do not play any significant role on the market due to the low volume of production of marketable commodities. However, they have a considerable production potential, chiefly in the form of non-multipliable area of arable land. Basing on the data from the Central Statistical Office (GUS) the author of the article defines the values of the essential features of these farms. The main aim of the article is to provide arguments in support of the thesis that the group of self-supplying farms may have a relatively limited significance for the modernisation of Polish agriculture but it, nonetheless, plays an essential role in the implementation of the concept of sustainable development of rural areas. Thus, the approach to self-supplying farms envisaged by the agricultural policy ought to be different than the approach to farms producing goods for the market.