Tel: (519) 446-2687

Chary Produce, 18 King Street South, Oakland, Ontario, Canada N0E 1L0

History

Steve Chary Sr. takes a break
in the field with a neighbour.

The Chary family moved from Ukraine in 1912, and settled originally in the Sudbury area before moving to the farm in sourthern Ontario in the 1920’s. Stephen Chary Sr. began farming in the 1930’s, growing everything from apples to pickles at one time or another. He also served on the Villa Nova Milk Board and as Reeve of Norfolk County.

Processing vegetable contracts and turkeys were the basis of the operation when the next generation of Chary farmers came along. Since that time, with the demise of the processing tomato industry in the area and the sale of the turkey quota, the Chary family began to concentrate on fresh market vegetable sales. Chary Produce was born in the late 1980’s, and has been steadily expanding ever since. Our goal is to provide the best of what Ontario has to offer to our customers.

A brief history of the tomato:

Tomatoes weren’t always so popular in North America. Worries about consumption included poisoning, witchcraft, and werewolves. Tomatoes are related to plants (nightshade, foxglove) which contain certain hallucinogenic compounds. As everyone knew, witches used nightshade to call werewolves. Finally, doubts about the safety of the tomato were put to rest in 1820 when a Colonel Robert Gibbon Johnson announced that he would eat a bushel of tomatoes in front of the Boston courthouse. Thousands turned out to watch the poor man die and were apparently shocked when he didn’t (if he actually ate the whole bushel or not isn’t clear). Nevertheless, tomatoes have steadily grown in popularity ever since. There are now 10,000 know varieties grown worldwide.

Pumpkin Harvest at the Chary Farm
sometime in the 1950's

 

The Chary kids sitting with a load of
tomatoes going to the factory (1975)

 

Chary Farm Tomato harvest in
hampers in (1965)