Aric is the general manager, overseeing the entire farm from market garden fields, pastures, livestock, ponds, forests to farmers markets plus sales and marketing. He manages the big picture.
Aric: "My job is growing soil. Without healthy soil there is no foreseeable health for humanity, animals or the planet. Here at Earth Haven Farm I utilize all plant and animal waste to create healthy compost which is spread out on the land and used to start my seedlings. Healthy soil feeds the pastures that feed my cows and the gardens that feed my customers. It is an ecosystem – a very delicate ecosystem that I honour and respect. In biodynamic agriculture the whole farm is considered. Everything is connected. It is part of the same, delicate ecosystem. The whole farm is my responsibility. I am it's caretaker."
After earning his college degree and spending some time in the beautiful mountains of British Columbia, Aric interned through the WWOOF program at a biodynamic farm in southwestern Ontario. It was there that he was mentored by a wonderful, hardworking family and he became inspired to farm. The biodynamic principals of meditation, awareness, and quiet observation fit perfectly with his natural, gentle instinct for plants and cultivation.
Aric: "All my life, even as a teen, I felt a strong connection to Mother Earth and a need to give back. Everything that I do here on the farm allows me to fulfill my soul's need to give back to the earth through the soil, the plants, and my animals. Most of all it allows me to give back to my family and my community, and that fills me up with gratitude."
Aric believes that how we farm, being Demeter certified using biodynamic principals, is very close to how our grandparents and generations before them farmed. Every aspect of the farm is related. The forests were maintained to create wind breaks and reservoirs for water, helping to build healthy soils. Many foods and medicines in the past were harvested from the forests. Pasture land was rarely tilled, but cultivated with companion plants that would but nutrients back into the soil and thus produce nutritious food for the livestock. Garden plots were tended with tender care with hands that pulled weeds not machines. Companion planting helped with nutrients and pest control. Composting was meticulously done throughout the seasons to produce enlivened soil that would be given back to the land.
Aric continues to learn new things every year about farming and is always looking to improve improve the lives of all who live here and our growing community.
A farmer is not just a farmer. A farmer has to wear many hats. A farmer does not work an eight hour day, but is on call by the farm 24 hours a day 7 days a week. A farmer becomes wise with age as every day is a learning experience.