Busman’s Holidays for Farmers

By | Category: Travel destinations, Travel news

Willis Tower Chicago

Willis Tower Chicago

The mid-west of America is the place that is most associated with farm crops. Here, vast soybean and corn fields cover the land. Here agriculture is the staple employment and the staple comment of conversation. But down in a triangle stretching from Chicago to the Quad Cities on the Illinois/Iowa borders, then down to Champaign and back up to Chicago there is another topic of conversation,-tourism. But tourism with a slight difference This is agri-tourism. Tourism for those people interested in farming, how crops are grown, how the land is managed and how and what machinery is used.
Did you know such tourism existed? Here’s a holiday with limited appeal.
From Chicago by road, air or by rail, Moline is one of the cities that make up this area known as the Quad cities, and is where John Deere has it headquarters. As part of the agri-tourism tours, visitors can visit the Deere headquarters as well as such agricultural giants as Caterpillar and Monsanto. Local universities with particular expertise could be included on the tours. With the Board of Trade and the Mercantile Exchange in Chicago, is possible for visitors to see the research, the growing and processing of a crop even down to the trading that occurs once the crop can be sold. It isn’t all soy and corn. There are orchards and beef herds in this part of the mid-west plus even a reindeer farm. All this has been packaged by the local governments as AG (short, of course, for agricultural) Tours. Here in the last 5 years, over fifty different nationalities have visited and agri-tourism has quadrupled. One of the biggest nations sending visitors is France, where for the last 5 years, farmers have been travelling here in their leisure time to see what they can learn and then take back to France for their benefit. But the Russians, Chinese, Spanish and Portuguese have also made the trip as well as some British farmers. You can expect more farmers and those connected with agriculture to be contacted in the future as this type of tourism is one of the growth areas..
Such has been the growth that now other US areas are looking to copy the success the AG Tours has made.

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