Severinski Farms in Pitt Meadows is being honoured with a Century Farm and Ranch Award to celebrate the entrepreneurship of one family that has supplied dairy products to the neighbouring communities for more than a century.
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Kevin and Audra Severinski represent the third generation of Severinskis to run the family dairy farm in Pitt Meadows, which was recently awarded with the Century Farm Award. (Brittany Roffel/CBC News)

“It’s so lovely to celebrate a family farm that, over the past 100 years, has grown and continues to provide fresh dairy and produce for British Columbians today,” said Lana Popham, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries. “I congratulate the three generations of the Severinski family for their roles in their richly deserved Century Farm and Ranch Award, and wish the family and the farm many more prosperous years to come.”

Severinski Farms began as a dairy when its founder Stephen Severinski immigrated to Canada from Yugoslavia in 1910. He purchased a two-hectare (five-acre) parcel of land in Cloverdale. Having established himself, Steven invited Manda, his fiancée in Yugoslavia, to join him in 1921. They married the day after her arrival, which also marks the beginning of Severinski Farms on Sept. 12, 1921.

In 1922, Stephen and Manda moved to Pitt Meadows where they purchased 16 hectares (40 acres). The dairy farm quickly expanded to 32.4 hectares (80 acres) where the main activities continue today. Stephen and Manda’s family grew along with the farm. The couple had 10 children.

Their youngest, Harry, bought the farm from his parents in 1965. He and his wife Louise increased their land base to 48.5 hectares (120 acres), milking 60 cows.

Within the family, ownership moved to their son and daughter-in-law, Kevin and Audra Severinski, in 2000. They continue dairy operations on a larger scale with their son Brandon on 59 hectares (145 acres) of owned land and another 40.5 hectares (100 acres) of leased land where they milk 160 cows three times a day. They are pleased and proud that Harry and Louise continue to be involved in the daily operations of the family farm.

Three generations of Severinskis have maintained progressive, innovative practices on their farms. Their cows wear computerized leg tags, which monitor milk output and daily routines and alert the farmers on their cellphones when these patterns change. Smart, energy-saving water misters keep cows cool in the recently retrofitted dairy. New LED lights throughout the farm are cutting energy bills in half. Such practices help maintain the farm’s viability for future generations.

This award honours the Severinski family’s tradition, work and dedication to dairy farming on the Lower Mainland and in B.C.

Every Century Farm and Ranch Award celebrates the enduring sense of community and rich heritage that accompanies farming and ranching in B.C.

Quotes:

Lisa Beare, MLA for Maple Ridge-Pit Meadows 

“Severinski Farms has been a pillar of our community for the past 100 years, helping to keep our families healthy and our local economy strong. Congratulations on this amazing milestone!”

Kevin and Audra Severinski, owners, Severinski Farms –

“We feel blessed that we are able to farm the same land our grandparents homesteaded 100 years ago.  We are proud to continue to provide and produce quality milk to Canadians and look forward to the next generation continuing this legacy.”

Last month, 14 of our dairy farms in Maine, as well as dozens of dairy farms across northern New England, got an unexpected and disappointing notice from Danone of North America saying that they were discontinuing their contracts with our organic dairy farmers in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and elsewhere.

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