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Wildfire Farms featured in Open Farm Day

Greg Vandermeulen

It's all about going back to the way things used to be for Woodmore area, Wildfire Farms owners Meaghan and Cory Lomax and they were happy to share that experience with Manitobans as part of Open Farm Day, a self-guided agritourism initiative from Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiative.

Wildfire Farms was just one of more than 40 farms offering tours of their facilities, and allowing people to get more insight into what running a farm involves.

The couple met in B.C. before deciding to head back to Manitoba and begin farming. They grow an organic garden using heirloom seeds, some of which date back to the 1700's.

"Manitoba is behind in the natural food industry," Meaghan said. "We wanted to start something here."

As the demand for foods that are not genetically modified increases, the couple hopes to build a future together on that farm.

In addition to a large market garden, they also raise chickens, eggs, and grass fed beef. The cattle are not finished on grain as feedlots do and are not exposed to hormones or medication.

Cory said they believe that vegetables can be grown using the heritage seed. They may not be the same size or colour, but he said customers are very pleased with the taste.

"They notice the difference," he said.

Meaghan's parents from the St. Jean area suggested the idea of participating in Open Farm Days, and the Lomax couple said they've enjoyed the experience.

"It was a great turnout," Cory said. "We figured we had around 130 people."

Visitors came from as far as Winnipeg, Winkler, Steinbach, Grunthal, and in one case from Japan (an exchange student).

Although 44 farms participated, only a handful were in this region. Along with Wildfire Farms was Woodmore area farm Walking Plow Charolais owned by MLA Cliff Graydon and his wife Rose.

The Tolstoi area featured Crikside Farm owned by Candace Grier and Louis Guimond and Jubema Holsteins owned by Bert, Justina and Marinus Hop.

For more information on Wildfire Farms check out www.wildfirefarms.ca.



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