The Benefits of Foraging

Foraging is a tremendously fun and fulfilling way to spend an afternoon. If it’s an office party or a day of relaxation you’re looking for, then our experiences easily beat go-karting and laser tag any day. But we have more to offer than a fun time and tasty food. We offer lasting benefits!

It is hard to overstate the value of nature. Skills developed, knowledge gained and fun had in the wild prove immensely valuable in every aspect of your life, work and wellbeing. Time spent with us will change your perspective.

When we first learned the names of some of our most common hedgerow plants, the countryside seemed to change before our eyes. The wild was no longer a wall of undifferentiated green, but a fine and detailed tapestry of all the plants we now recognised, each with their own flavour, uses, history and associated folk tales.

It was as though we had upgraded our eyeballs to high definition, or been given glasses we never knew we needed. Foraging changes the way you think about and interact with the world. The change is in your head, but it doesn’t feel that way. It feels as though the world is changing and intensifying around you.

As humans, our senses were developed first to assist us in hunting and gathering. Our perception of colour helped us pick the ripest fruit and tell the poisononous from the tastiest berries. The powerful link between smell and memory helped us remember those plants we had eaten safely before, and those we had been taught to fear. Your body hasn’t forgotten this: wild plants still provide a vivid and delicious feast for the senses.

 

Our experience and passion speaks for itself, and so will yours if you join us, but there is also much scientific research being undertaken to confirm what we know instinctively about the forest – that wellbeing, health, happiness at work and home, memory and teamwork all improve as a result of immersing oneself in the wild.

It has been shown that being close to nature can improve people’s mood, productivity and wellbeing. In Japan, the art of Shinrin-yoku or “forest bathing” is widely practiced and recognised as a therapeutic activity, and western science is just catching on. Studies such as these assert the measurable improvement access to green space can have on mental health.

As well as the general benefits of nature to wellbeing and morale, directors of businesses will be intrigued to know that research is being carried out into some very specific benefits. This study demonstrates that a measurable cognitive advantage is achieved by spending time in and actively engaging with natural environments. As an exercise in concentration and mindfulness, away from digital and artificial distraction, time spent in the forest improves creative reasoning, problem solving, attention and memory skills.

These scientific examples only scratch the surface of the many self-evident benefits of spending time in the wild. The life-changing effect foraging can have on your senses, memory and perception are only now being explored in depth by science, but can be experienced every day on our courses.