The RedWillow Story
“The Last Great West” is what the newspaper advertisement promised Dr. Henry Schmitt in 1914 and what enticed him to make the move north from Illinois to the grassy plains of Saskatchewan. His excitement for the untamed eventually brought him further north, away from the unbroken sightlines of the southern Saskatchewan prairie to the northern edge of the grain belt; to the town of Arborfield. It was here in 1934 that Dr. Schmitt bought two quarters of land that started the family heritage of farming which would later lead to what is today RedWillow Organics.
Walking through our pastoral farm today, we think it is easy to recognize what Great Grandfather Schmitt saw in this area. Near the serene small town of Carrot River, and nestled next to the game-rich boreal forest of the Pasquia Hills, RedWillow is not just a world-class organic farm, but also a sustainable celebration of the beauty of northeastern Saskatchewan.
The land itself is some of the richest farmland in the world; certified organic in Canada, and export ready with organic status to the US, Europe, Japan, and Switzerland. To achieve this, we’ve dedicated ourselves to the strictest guidelines set by the international organic community, and kept nearly 202 hectares or 500 acres of our farm dedicated to the biodiversity of the natural Saskatchewanian landscape. Rivers and streams weave through boreal forest and pasture land to provide a natural sanctuary for the plant and animal life crucial to the future of this pristine ecosystem.
The importance of the health of the environment was not lost on Dr. Schmitt’s grandson, Larry. Together with his wife Angela, Larry has spent over thirty years using his lifelong knowledge of farming to bring the land RedWillow sits on to the peak of the organic world. Focusing on the grains, clovers, and oilseeds, Larry and his family diversified the land and worked hard to achieve and sustain certified organic status. Raising their family, while also raising beef cattle, milk cows, poultry, lambs, and horses, the Schmitt family story is the story of organic farming done right.
The land in which the Schmitt’s farm sits is truly special. The nearby Pasquia Hills are a trove of natural wonder, and is also one of the most game-rich destinations in North America. Large native species, like moose, elk and whitetail deer, share the forested space with lynx, coyotes and wolves to make this an invigorating place to live and work. We believe that these natural areas are fundamentally important to the health of our farm and we take every chance to celebrate it. From horseback riding and bird watching, to the adventure of snowmobiling, or hunting the natural wonder of this area is easy to see.
Now in their fourth generation, RedWillow Organics has continued its family tradition as Larry and Angela’s children have become an integral part of the farm. As an organic family farm, we offer a variety of products and services that provide a premium organic experience from the most beautiful natural surroundings. The RedWillow way, one that places the importance on sustainability and natural growth, is the way that the Schmitts follow.
The strength of our family heritage is what drives us to continue this legacy for the next generation. Clean air, clean water and the purest product from the richest farmland, RedWillow Organics is a testament to the importance of our natural landscape and the future of organic farming. Hard work, history, and the untamed natural beauty of our surroundings, we at RedWillow Organics truly believe that this is what Henry Schmitt saw in-between the lines of “The Last Great West.”