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West Nipissing Remembers

by Brad Aubin

It’s a bittersweet feeling for Rhéal and Ghislaine Rivet, who have finally put up their straw hats and retired from growing and selling sweet corn. In order to free up their summers to be able to travel, the couple have taken a step back from their much loved field - a first in 35 years.

“It all just started as a couple of rows of corn,” recounts Rhéal Rivet. “Just a little hobby farm for fun. But it quickly grew to 15 acres and eventually selling corn from Windsor to Western Quebec, Toronto to Moosonee.”
Rivet’s corn stand has been a staple in downtown Sturgeon Falls. For decades, customers have flocked there for some of the tastiest sweet corn around. He even jokes that some people didn’t know his name, and would simply call him “Monsieur Blé d’Inde” (Mr. Corn). So what was that secret that made his corn so successful? He admits it was a lot of trial and error.

“I have experimented with a lot of varieties over the years. Every summer, I would have an allocated lot for a different variety of corn I’d sow. If it would end up being better than my crop, I’d sow that in my field the following season. So I experimented quite a bit and finished with the best varieties of sweet corn that I could produce,” he explains.

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Goodbye sweet corn, hello sweet retirement