There’s a new kind of farm in Calgary, and it’s surging ahead with its business plan to make money, be environmentally conscious, and aim to change the import market.
31-year-old Paul Shumlich is the founder and CEO of Calgary’s Deepwater Farms.
Officially formed in 2015 and operating at a commercial scale since 2018, their farm is a 10,000-square-foot warehouse in the southeast part of the city producing, like clockwork, a weekly 1,500 pounds of leafy greens (baby kale, baby arugula, watercress, Swiss chard, and beet leaves) for grocery stores and restaurants in an environment of highly controlled light, humidity, water usage and a precise 14-day growing period from seed to salad.
It all started nearby when Shumlich was a student at Mount Royal University, first studying business and then innovation and entrepreneurship. As a young man in his 20s, he got curious about food; he wondered who grew what he ate and, more importantly, how? “I saw the opportunity when I was walking through the grocery store, and I noticed that all the produce was coming from Mexico and California in the middle of winter. It was organic, but the quality just wasn’t there.
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