Three Farmers FAQs
Who are Three Farmers and what do they stand for?
Yes, there are REALLY three farmers and two sisters at the heart of our business. Dan Vandenhurk, Colin Rosengren and Ron Emde are second- and third-generation farmers who proudly count the Canadian prairies as some of the best agricultural land in the world. The business is managed by sisters and part owners, Natasha and Elysia Vandenhurk, making Three Farmers a real deal, woman-led, family business.
Three Farmers believes that everyone should have wholesome food to eat, an understanding of where it comes from, and how it is made. As real farmers we are committed to preserving the land through sustainable growing practices and providing nourishing foods grown on Saskatchewan family farms.
Why is traceability important?
Modern food production has created a growing divide between rural and urban living with a disconnect between farmers and their customers. We want to connect you back to the origin of your food, the story of how it is made and the importance of sustainable farming practices. We place great value on our ecological assets and believe in utilizing them in the most effective and efficient manner possible.
In a time when there is no shortage of concerns about food safety, it is important to be able to trace your food back to its source. Rather than just making a claim on the label, we openly share how our products are grown and made. We want everyone to take a front row seat in the creation of their food and be able to reach us with the questions that they have about its production.
It is this fully integrated approach, monitoring all elements of the process, that enables us to provide fully traceable food products. Our traceability refers to the fact that every step in the food production process is completely transparent. Simply enter the traceability code found on every Three Farmers product here.
Socially and politically, we believe that the various food movements that we have seen over the past few years, whether it be for organic foods, local foods or food sovereignty, are really pushing for one clear objective – to know where our food comes from and to hold those who produce it accountable for the resources, they use to create these foods. Our transparency through traceability addresses both concerns by allowing our customers and consumers to contact us with their concerns and hold us accountable.
Where are Three Farmers products produced?
Three Farmers is proud to say that every step in the creation of our products is done right at home on the prairies.
What is our farmers growing philosophy?
We take a direct seeding approach to all our crops. This means we do not till our land. Tillage has been shown to be counterproductive to healthy soils. It destroys the habitat of microorganisms, destroys organic matter, and causes soil erosion which destroys the fertility of soils. For this reason, we are not organic. It is not because we believe in the unnecessary application of chemicals to crops but rather because of our focus on healthy soils for the purpose of building healthy plants
We take a holistic approach to sustainable agriculture that encompasses the ecological, economic, social and political parameters that are affected through food production. Ecologically, we strive to reduce the negative environmental externalities created by agriculture, protect local ecosystems, and preserve the biodiversity of our region. We do this by implementing zero tillage farming techniques and customizing our crop nutrition plans to fit the needs of the soil and plant life. Our crop rotation techniques allow for the preservation of the soil structure and stops the excessive depletion of soil nutrients. We are also reviving ancient farming techniques such as inter-cropping which is the practice of growing two or more crops in the same field at one time. Thus, each crop can give the other what it needs in terms of nutrients while maintaining the integrity of the soil.
Economically, we understand that we have a world to feed and that resources are limited. Our land and water supply must sustain not only ourselves and our children, but hundreds of generations down the road. We place great value on our ecological assets and believe in utilizing them in the most effective and efficient manner possible. Socially and politically, we believe that the various food movements that we have seen over the past few years, whether it be for organic foods, local foods, or food sovereignty, are really pushing for one clear objective – to know where our food comes from and to hold those who produce it accountable for the resources, they use to create these foods. Our transparency through traceability addresses both concerns by allowing our customers to contact us with their concerns and hold us accountable.
Are Three Farmers Foods products allergy-friendly?
Our Roasted Chickpeas, Roasted Lentils, Roasted Peas and Camelina Oil are Nut & Peanut Free, Gluten Free and certified GMO free. Our products can also be found at SnackSafely.com. A website which acts as a hub for consumers to find legitimately allergen free snacks.
The Snack Safely seal of approval confirms that Three Farmers chooses to list its qualifying products according to SnackSafely.com’s terms and by doing so helps accommodate those with food allergies.
The Safe Snack Guide is trusted by thousands of schools and tens of thousands of parents nationwide to help keep egregious allergens out of the classroom and home.
What are pulses and legumes?
Pulses are part of the legume family (any plants that grow in pods), but the term “pulse” refers only to the dry edible seed within the pod. Beans, lentils, chickpeas, and split peas are the most common types of pulses. Pulses are special because they have distinct health benefits apart from other legumes. Unlike legumes like peanuts and soy, for example, pulses are low in fat and very high in plant protein and fiber.
In addition to being good for you, pulses are also good for our planet. Pulses are nitrogen-fixing crops, which means they can convert nitrogen in the air into a plant available nutrient. Pulses can reduce the need for nitrogen fertilizers, ultimately improving the environmental sustainability of annual cropping systems.
What type of lentils are used in the Roasted Lentil Snacks?
Large green lentils.
What type of chickpeas are used in the Roasted Chickpeas?
Are our products organic?
No, they are not organic, however, we do take a holistic approach to sustainable agriculture that encompasses the ecological, economic, social and political parameters that are affected through food production.
We use several innovative farming techniques to ensure healthy soils and healthy plants. Our focus is on soil nutrition and plant nutrition. Organic practices and conventional practices can be somewhat limited in these ways. Instead, we work towards more regenerative farming tactics (such as inter cropping, crop rotation, soil nutrition planning, etc.) to bridge the gap between organic and conventional and focus on what our soils need and what our plants need to grow healthy and fight off disease. It is important to us that we generate healthy soils for generations to come and leave the soil in a better state then when we found it. Healthy soil makes healthy plants.
Is the Yeast Extract Three Farmers uses Gluten Free?
Yes. The yeast extract is gluten free in all Three Farmers products.
Camelina Oil FAQs
Where does camelina oil originate from?
Camelina is an ancient oilseed that originated in parts of Northern Europe and Central Asia. The seed was grown and pressed for use as a culinary oil throughout Europe up until the mid-1940s. It is a non-GMO oilseed with many nutritional benefits due to the high levels of Omega-3 and Vitamin E inherent in the oil, as well as the balance of Omega -3, -6 and -9.
How should I use Camelina Oil?
Camelina can replace any culinary oils that you currently use in your home. Three Farmers Camelina Oil is a pure oil that is perfect for spreads, dips, marinades, and dressings. Due to the light texture of the oil and its fresh flavor, it enhances other ingredients rather than overpowering them.
It can also withstand high heat cooking given it has a smoke point of 475 degrees Fahrenheit. Sautéing, roasting, searing and even pan-frying foods are all ways of using Camelina Oil and you do not have to worry about burning or diminishing the nutritional properties of the oil.
Can Camelina Oil be used at high temperatures?
Yes. Three Farmers Camelina Oil has a smoke point of 475 degrees Fahrenheit making it perfect for sauteing, roasting, searing, grilling, and pan-frying, allowing it to maintain its nutritional value.
How long is the shelf life and do I have to refrigerate it?
Though Camelina is highly polyunsaturated and rich in Omega-3, it remains stable due to its high levels of Vitamin E called gamma-tocopherols. These tocopherols act as an antioxidant in Camelina Oil extending its shelf life over and above any other expeller pressed oils, Camelina Oils shelf life is 24 months from press date when stored appropriately. Appropriate conditions are out of direct sunlight and away from humidity and heat (room temperature is fine). Refrigeration is also an option as Camelina Oil will not change consistency when chilled.
How does camelina oil compare to other oils, such as olive, canola, and flax?
Camelina Oil is unique in that it provides the necessary daily intake of Omega-3 fatty acids that our body requires while at the same time can function as a supreme culinary oil.
Olive oil is abundant in mono-unsaturated fat and functions as a salad and finishing oil but has a lower smoke point than Camelina Oil and does not have the nutritional advantages of Omega-3 that are inherent in Camelina Oil.
While Flax oil is high in Omega-3, it is an unstable source of Omega-3, has a limited shelf life and does not withstand heat making it unsuitable for culinary applications.
Grapeseed and avocado oil are both known for their high smoke points and cooking benefits. However, they are typically refined (as opposed to being in their natural, raw state) and they do not have the Omega-3 content that Camelina Oil does, nor the balanced fatty acid profile that is known to be beneficial for the human body.
What are Omega-3 fatty acids and what do they do for me?
Dietary fats are an important part of a healthy diet as the body utilizes them for several purposes such as transporting oxygen through the blood stream to all parts of the body, cell membrane development and strengthening, strengthening of organs and tissue, skin health, prevention of premature aging, and promotion of weight loss through cholesterol lowering effects. Essential fatty acids (EFAs) are labelled “essential” because they cannot be synthesized or produced by the body. The two primary EFAs are linoleic acid (LA which is synthesized into Omega-6) and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA which is synthesized into Omega-3). Of these EFAs, ALA is most lacking in our diets today. Clinical research suggests that an increase in the presence of ALA in human serum levels can significantly contribute to the prevention of cardiovascular disease, inflammation, diabetes, and hypertension.
Can you deep fry with Camelina Oil?
While Camelina Oil does have a high smoke point of 475 degrees Fahrenheit, we do not recommend using Camelina Oil in fryers (high heat for long periods of time) or re-using the oil after it has been cooked with. The flavours and nutrients of Camelina Oil will remain intact however using it in a high heat fryer will transition the properties of the oil after a couple of uses.
Is Camelina Oil a cold pressed oil?
Yes, Camelina Oil is a cold pressed oil as it is obtained naturally by crushing oil seeds at room temperature. There is no extra heat and chemicals required, which makes it a healthier variant of oil. A typical process of cold pressing can be seen below.
Expeller pressing is a chemical-free mechanical process that extracts oil from seeds and nuts. This method of oil extraction is an alternative to the hexane-extraction method used for many conventional oils. A mechanical screw press is used to press the seed through a barrel shaped cavity. The screw compresses the seed and the oil seeps out through the openings while the debris (or meal) remains in the barrel.
The temperature reached during pressing depends on the hardness of the seed or nut. The harder the seed or nut the more pressure required to extract the oil, which in turn creates more friction and higher heat. Given that Camelina is a soft shell seed, all of Three Farmers camelina oils are processed at temperatures less than 40 degrees Celsius; well below the standard for being officially considered cold-pressed.
Most Natural State
Delicate oils, or those in which flavour nuances are a key component such as Camelina, need to be treated with greater care in controlling processing factors. Three Farmers carefully monitors the heat that is produced during the expelling process to ensure it remains below the standard so that the delicate taste profile of our Camelina Oil is not damaged.