Ruth Gatzke and Marc McKerracher operate their 2nd generation farm located at 219 Canboro Rd in Ridgeville. Rumar is a certified organic farm that uses biodynamic farming principles and practices. They grow tender fruit, berries, heirloom vegetables and melons.
This Is Us
In the winter of 2013, Katherine and Alfred Gatzke announced their desire to retire from farming. Ruth and Marc seized the opportunity to carry on the tradition of the Family Farm. Having grown up on the property, for Ruth it was coming home again. It was an opportunity that Marc had often dreamed of, but had never seriously considered. Now the dream was finally within reach.
After a 20-year career in real estate, and then being a partner in the successful launch of August Restaurant, Marc was ready for a new challenge. Having grown up on a cattle farm in the Bruce Peninsula, he was familiar with the lifestyle advantages farm living offered, and his family had always maintained a large vegetable garden and Marc was savvy to the ways of canning, pickling and freezing. Marc learned at his mother’s side the importance of preserving the best the summer season offered for healthy, economical eating come winter.
Ruth left the corporate world of finance to slow down. She now works from home as a consultant to Credit Unions and also is the CFO at Rumar Farm.
Marc and Ruth are committed to sustainable farming practices that are good for the environment while producing quality food harvested at their peak in nutrition and flavour. They became certified organic in 2017 and certified biodynamic in 2020. Biodynamic farming was developed by scientist and philosopher Dr Rudolf Steiner in 1924. Farms holding the Demeter certification help preserve wildlife and endangered species habitat, they must dedicate a minimum of 10% of their land base as a biodiversity reserve. They measure their farm’s fertility by the ability of their soil to sustain agricultural plant growth by using green manure, crop rotation and planting legumes and nitrogen catch crops. They control disease, insect and weed through crop rotation, plant diversity and timed plantings. Use of mulching and stale bed planting also helps control weeds. The biggest requirement in biodynamic farming is the use of special preparations that are like healing remedies for the earth.
We have a chance at establishing a new generation of farm, in a special place with special meaning. We take our role as current stewards of this unique property seriously, and we know that decisions we make now, will benefit the next generation. It is said that “those who plant trees, think of others”. That is our role, and we will do it.