Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on the Interns Expose Amway blog.
Lorraine Lee is a student from Hong Kong who was an intern for the Nutrilite farm in Brazil this summer. Next week is her last week. Please enjoy Lorraine’s recap of her experience this summer.
I first heard about the Amway Nutrilite Organic Farming Internship Programme two years ago, and I was determined to apply for it. Now, I’ve become one of the four interns. I am grateful for this opportunity to visit the Nutrilite facilities in Buena Park and Lakeview, as well as to experience farm life at the Nutrilite farm in Brazil.
The 8-week internship program allows me to understand more about Nutrilite products. To make a tablet, which really improves a person’s health, requires good sources of materials such as plants. To ensure the quality of materials, careful monitoring on production of materials is needed from the start. The Nutrilite Brazil farm practices Biodynamic agriculture — farm products contain more nutrients; products made of those fresh, nutritious plants give more energy to consumers.
Biodynamic agriculture is beyond organic, it is more sustainable. Through this programme, I am delighted to experience how a farm operates in person and to realize it is possible to put aside chemicals and return to farming which maintains harmony with the environment in today’s modern world.
Biodynamic agriculture is, to a certain point, similar to Chinese traditional agriculture methods as they both take reference from the moon; I found this very interesting and inspiring. Biodynamic agriculture is still not very known in Hong Kong, so I want to understand more and bring this farming method back to Hong Kong!
Last week was Biodynamic week. This was a rare opportunity for me to learn biodynamic agriculture in depth because it is usually held in September. I joined a course of making biodynamic preparation. We needed to mould cow manure with our own hands! At first, the feeling was a bit weird; but I understood that everything we eat comes from this, without good and biodynamic preparation, we would not have had the chance to eat good and healthy vegetables. We continued to mix and painted on acerola trees, the major crops in the farm.
One of the biggest challenges must is the language barrier. I did not know a single Portuguese word before arrival in Brazil. However, with support from staffs and friends and my little lonely planet’s phrase book, I started to pick up some Portuguese words. Learning a language is interesting and a must-do when staying in a foreign country. Only by learning the locals’ language you can communicate with others, so that you can fully involve in their music, shows, and their culture. There are times that people cannot understand what I say even with body language, this make me determined to learn faster and faster. Although I am still at beginner level now, I can chat with my friends!
We help in different departments on the farm every day, from laboratory, harvesting, irrigation, and cafeteria to garden, composting, pest control and many more. This gives me a big picture of the farm. I’ve learned a lot about farm operation and that every employee’s contribution counts.
We also need to do a project; my project is about recycling solid waste assessment. I was amazed by detailed waste management of the farm. Here, they divide trash right from the source. There are recycling bins at offices, cafeteria and farm area. Even more, organic matters and seeds of the acerola cherries from factories are used for composting and feeding cattle. It not only minimizes solid waste, it is also an environmentally friendly practice. I need to construct maps indicating locations of trash cans, and help analyze conditions of cans and awareness of staffs on recycling. It is an interesting project; I make use of what I have learnt before, and I acquire more knowledge of it.
I really enjoyed my internship in Brazil. I thank Amway for giving me an opportunity to experience farm life at the other side of the world. People here are nice and always giving us helping hands. There is still one week before I leave, and I would definitely treasure every moment in Brazil.