A common saying is that’ Australia rode to prosperity on sheep’s back’ but for man~ farmers today wool prices are so low that they face difficulty in meeting their costs of production. Beef producers further suffer during years of low prices and drought. At the same time, wheat returns have remained volatile, depending upon the seasonal variations in the northern hemisphere. There is a long tradition of farmers seeking off-farm income during hard times which includes means such as farm labour in the neighbourhood or miscellaneous work in the nearest town. Now-a-days, such work is more difficult to find in Australia, with the average unemployment rate being around 8.5 percent and much higher in rural areas.

Agro-tourism, which has recently come into the fore in Australia, provides newer means of income generation. It includes farm stays or rural holidays and is found an excellent way to supplement farmers’ income. The visitors, on their part, both tourists from Australia and overseas, enjoy a unique holiday experience in the farm country side. Agro-tourism has thus become an important part of the tourist industry in Australia due to its synergic effects, to both sides. The present story deals with this successful approach which may provide similar ideas to farming households and countries for its application mutatis mutandis.

Agro-Tourism in Australia (1939 downloads)