The History of Howe Farms
Our Farming Roots date back to the 1800’s when William Howe from Kent England settled in Elgin County as a general farmer. He and his wife purchased a plot of land on what is currently John Wise Line, West of highway 73 and East of Jaffa.
William’s son Alfred and his wife Emma purchased a farm across the road from the original family homestead. They began growing strawberries around 1928. Alfred and Emma’s youngest son Mervin married Ferne Alton. They remained in the area and continued farming strawberries and vine crops, as well as growing tobacco and milking dairy cows with their three sons; Bruce, Keith and Glenn.
Glenn carried on part of the farming operation specializing mainly in growing strawberries and vine crops.
A farm market was built in 2012 on the farm to sell produce from the farm and to also feature other locally grown fruits and vegetables from neighboring farms.
On the Howe Farm, Traditional family values are carried on and modern farming techniques are incorporated to grow the best flavored produce. Glenn, Monica and their sons believe it is equally important to produce quality fruits and vegetable that are grown in an environmentally friendly and sustainable manner. They were the first in the area to use underground drip irrigation to utilize water efficiently. Their efforts were recognized by the Catfish Creek Conservation Authority and received a conservation award in 2001.
We were also one of the first growers to sign on to the food safety and traceability initiative through the Canadian Horticultural Council and have consistently scored top marks for our food handling practices.
At present Glenn, Monica, and sons Ryan, Rick and Kevin operate a large acreage of strawberries, watermelons, cantaloupe, squash, pumpkins, beans and garden vegetables grown for their own market and for wholesale. We view our farm as being large enough to grow ample quantities and varieties of produce for our community and small enough to conserve, care-for and uphold the biodiversity of our farms soils, forests, streams and ponds.
The sixth generation of the Howe family is beginning to present itself with little Emma and baby Cohen. Whether they will farm or not remains to be seen. There is no doubt however that this next generation will be influenced by the love and commitment that the Howe family has for rural life and farming.