Pizza Farm: Manitoba’s Integrity Foods
Pizza lovers are dining al fresco in rural Manitoba and it all began with a wood-fired oven named Hildegard.
Hildegard can be found at Integrity Foods, a thriving organic bread and pizza business run by Dora and Cornelius Friesen on their farm outside Riverton, Manitoba.
The couple converted their attached, double car garage into a retail space where they sell their bread.
Pizza night was the outcome of their desire to share the gift of this oven.
Manitoba’s Integrity Foods provides the ultimate farm-to-fork experience.
On pizza night, guests are encouraged to relax, tour the grounds and have a picnic on the farm.
The pizzas are sold whole and boxed, adding they’ve never sold by the slice.
The experience is kid-friendly, with lots to keep all ages busy when not eating.
Most of the vegetable toppings came from the farm with an emphasis on using local products.
Their best known pizza is the Garden Special. People are given a basket and encouraged to walk the garden, filling their basket with whatever vegetable they choose.
Then they bring their selection to the oven area where staff use them to create a pizza that is about as custom-made as they come. The veggies are added raw and one of the most popular vegetables to add are beets.
The bakery and farm have also become a hub for learning over the years.
Integrity Foods is not only a livelihood but also a philosophy of life and of food. That philosophy emphasizes the health of people and their environment and includes the use of quality ingredients that are organic, local and affordable, if possible.
Pizza sales make up about 25 percent of their sales. Pizzas are made on weekends from the third weekend of June until the third weekend in November. People drive out from Winnipeg, over a 2 hour drive, especially to visit the farm and “Pick-your-own- Pizza”.
Customers fall into all age groups and are spreading the word about this hidden gem. Some families have come out for years and now their children come.