Lately, my family has been feeling a little restless. We love to travel, but in recent years, we have found it hard to get away due to work and finances. One day, during a family meeting, we asked each family member, “If you could do anything in the world, what would it be?” Everyone agreed they would love to travel. The more we talked about it, the more we wanted to do it. I am a firm believer that you can do most anything you set your mind to. After thinking it over for weeks, I guess you could say we became a bit obsessed with the idea. My family decided we wanted to find a way to travel full time. We came to the conclusion that we had to be willing to do whatever it takes, even if it means selling everything we own. This burning desire to see the world has sent me on a quest for knowledge.
In preparing for this daring adventure, I have been doing a lot of research on the different ways people travel economically. I came across a fascinating option: WWOOFing! Prior to my research, I had never heard of WWOOF. I am surprised by this because I actually spend a lot of money on organic products and spend a lot of time researching them.
So what is WWOOF? WWOOF is an abbreviation for:
- Working Weekends On Organic Farms
- Willing Workers On Organic Farms
- Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms
WWOOF was established in 1971 in the UK by a woman named Sue Coppard. What was once considered an effort to educate a community about the benefits of organic farming, over time, has become a worldwide endeavor! Essentially, WWOOF is when organic farmers offer accommodations, such as food and boarding, in exchange for work. It is a great opportunity to learn about sustainable agriculture, while lowering a farmer’s overhead costs.
I believe everyone should at least know about WWOOF, even if they never try it. It’s not just about the travel benefit or learning to milk a cow. WWOOFing is incredibly beneficial to the organic farmer in the form of ‘free’ labor, but the customer also benefits in many ways. I personally am grateful for the option to choose organic. Anyone who buys organic knows it is expensive! Have you ever wondered why? Here are a few reasons you will likely pay more when purchasing organic:
- Organic produce requires more time to grow than conventional produce because organic produce lacks the harmful pesticides, herbicides, and growth hormones. I’m sure you have heard the saying, ‘time is money’.
- Natural methods of disease and pest prevention are more expensive to purchase and ship than synthetic fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides.
- Without the use of conventional chemicals, organic produce requires more manual labor, like keeping weeds at bay.
- Organic farmers produce less product than conventional farmers, and their product is generally smaller in size. Regulations require organic products to be separate from conventional during processing and shipping.
- Conventional farmers are issued billions of dollars per year in government subsidies, which is considerably more than organic farmers receive.
- Organic livestock farmers feed their animals 100% organic food, which drastically increases overhead expenses.
- Organic certification requires farmers to meet strict certification requirements. These accommodations add up over time.
Organic products are not just good for the body, they’re good for the planet! Purchasing organic products is an excellent way to support organic farming, but WWOOFing offers an even better way, with the added benefit of travel! So, what are we waiting for? We only live once, but what you do in this life can make a HUGE impact on future generations. I’ve listed some very informative WWOOF sites below. I hope you found this information helpful. Thanks so much for stopping by!