New to the Calgary Co-op Kitchen Theatre stage is Grainworks, a family owned organic farming operation. The story of Grainworks began in 1912 at Vulcan, AB when Dwayne Smith’s great grandparents were practicing sustainable farming. Flash forward 100 years and Dwayne and his wife Doreen took Grainworks to the next level and obtained organic certification in 1988. They eat organically but when Stampede rolls around, like many of us, they can’t resist those midway mini doughnuts.
Chef Darren Nixon will be showcasing their products on the Kitchen Theatre stage Friday, July 3 at 7PM and Saturday, July 4th at 1PM.
For a full list of presenters on the Calgary Co-op Kitchen Theatre stage please visit the Western Showcase website.
Calgary Stampede (CS): Briefly tell us about yourself and what your typical day looks like.
Dwayne Smith: With farming, there are not too many typical days. Tasks for the day change with the weather and the seasons. Seldom is one day the same as the previous as there is a broad spectrum of items on the agenda from planting the crop, to working with machinery, to cleaning grain, to scouting crops, working the soil and harvesting the crops. It’s partially what makes being a farmer so fun, no room for monotony.
CS: When did you know you wanted to be involved in the food industry?
Smith: My family has been farming the prairies for over one hundred years; essentially this is what I was born to do. We’re now a third generation family run farm, but it wasn’t until after I embarked on my career that I realized the actual impact we have as farmers on the food industry. Choices on the right foods to buy in the store start with the right choices on growing practices. It’s part of the reason why we started growing organically back in the 80’s.
CS: What do you love about your job?
Smith: Being outdoors the whole time is fantastic!! I have a lot of fun getting to work with the land, wildlife and weather to be able to coax the crop into the bin each year. The satisfaction of watching the fruits of your labour grow through each stage throughout the season is immeasurable.
CS: Do you have a favourite memory of the Calgary Stampede or Kitchen Theatre?
Smith: Favourite Calgary Stampede memory is the midway. I always looked forward to riding on the “zipper”. The chucks are great too… Let’s not forget about mini doughnuts.