Raising Earthworms for Profit

MOTHER's Children showcases a twelve-year old raising earthworms for profit. Jody Gerard, "the worm king, Jr." changed New York state sales tax laws and proved kids can make a difference.

| July/August 1982

A twelve-year-old raising earthworms for profit changed the New York state sales tax law and proved that kids too can make a difference. 

MOTHER knows that many youths undertake interesting, original projects and start their own small businesses. To support these endeavors, we buy and publish well-written articles from children and teenagers concerning their efforts. However, we recommend that all young authors query (that is, send us a letter telling about the story they'd like to do) before writing a full article. Send your queries to MOTHER's Children, MOTHER EARTH NEWS, Hendersonville, NC. 

Raising Earthworms for Profit

Jody Gerard, "the Worm King, Jr." 

I raise and sell worms. My hobby is fun, earns me spending money, and lets me perform a service to the anglers in my community. That's not all, either: You see, my little bait business got me involved in a fight that actually changed the tax law of my entire state.

It all started when a neighbor named Mr. Landie offered my brother John a chance to sell worms. Mr. Landie had been running a bait stand of his own, but he was having trouble getting along with the tax department, so he wanted to quit. He decided to set John up in the business, though, figuring the tax people wouldn't bother kids . . . but little did he know how wrong he was about that!

How I Got Involved 

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