Local organic farm dedicated to growing a healthier community
With study after study proving the connection between diet and health, the old saying, ‘eat an apple a day to keep the doctor away’ rings truer today than ever before. It is this belief in the power of organic foods to heal and sustain people’s health that inspired founder, Mario Roque to start a nutrient dense organic operation, named Paradise Fields, on his 64-acre property in Binbrook, Ontario.
In 2015, the 71-year-old retiree was inspired to do something to improve the health of the Hamilton community where he lived and worked as a homebuilder for more than forty years. He began Paradise Fields with a test garden plot last year. Today, it has 4000 apple trees, 90 pear trees, a strawberry and raspberry patch, and four acres of 50 different vegetables including heirloom tomatoes as well as exotics, such as maca root.
The key to grow the most nutritious fruits and vegetables possible, explains Roque, is by remineralizing the farm’s soil in which its plants grow. The enriched content in the soil is then absorbed by the plants to create fruits and vegetables that are substantially more nutritious than those sold at a typical grocery store. Brian Tammi, the farm manger for Paradise Fields, applies his expertise from 10 years of organic farming to oversee the process.
“Most soils contain only ten to twenty minerals,” explains Roque. “Our soil contains all 92 of the world’s known minerals and trace minerals, which then get absorbed in the produce we grow.”
The two ingredients added to develop this enriched soil are seawater and B.C. glacial rock dust. Furthermore, the farm’s soil was recently sent to a U.S.-based lab to learn how to increase the Brian Tammi, Farm Manager, Paradise Fields soil’s vitamin and phytonutrient content, as well.
“What we are achieving is the best possible nutrition in the organic fruits and vegetables themselves,” says Roque. “And soil is the foundation of that process.”
The benefits of consuming foods with substantially more nutrients than the typical grocery store produce are plenty, according to Roque. The company website explains that the average human body contains approximately four trillion cells. Between 60-70% of those cells replace themselves every 6 months – meaning 15 billion cells in a body are replaced every day. Within each cell is DNA that requires at least 45 separate minerals to replicate itself properly.
If the body cannot access the primary and trace minerals required to go through its biological process fully, it begins to degenerate. That’s something Paradise Fields hopes to address as it continues to expand its operations.
Today, Paradise Fields offers a selection of organic produce for visitors to purchase, with more to be available by late summer.
Plans are in the works to build a greenhouse for winter growing as well as a 4,500 square foot facility that houses a store, juice and smoothie bar, and cold storage.
The long-term vision is to transform the property into a tourist farm destination that will offer cooking classes and education on home gardens.
Paradise Fields is open to the public Tuesday, noon to 7 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, visit www.paradisefields.ca