The Chapman family farm has grown from a father and two sons operation in 1961 to a multiple generation farm of two brothers, Darren and Parry, a cousin, Rob, his nephew, Justin, and Rob’s brother-in-law, Jeff Elliott. We crop 12,500 acres, hay 1,800 acres, pasture 500 cow/calves on 3,400 acres pasture with the help of three full time and three part-time employees.
Our spouses and family are actively involved in the farm operations. Our haying operation helps balance the work-load. We market hay locally, across the United States and abroad in the dairy, horse and beef market with alfalfa, alfalfa/grass and grass hay.
Our farming operation is located South of Virden, in southwestern Manitoba, by the intersection of two major highways, #1 and #83.
Cell (204) 851-0164
Chapman Bros. named Red River Exhibition Farm Family of the Year
The Chapman Bros. Farms is a well run farm operation that exemplifies excellent pioneering attributes. The Chapmans have always risen to the occasion – they assess the situation, identify the need, invent the processes or machinery required and execute the plan. Above all they treat family, staff and neighbours with respect and courtesy.
There is a long history of farming in the Chapman family. George Chapman homesteaded a section of land in the Plumas area in 1903 and later helped his 14 year old son Robert get started with a quarter section in 1917. Robert later married Amy and together they raised 8 children. In 1944, they moved 4 miles south of Virden, and set up shop on 600 acres of land. In 1959, Amy passed away and from that point on Robert’s sons, George and Russell began taking on more of the farming operation; then called R. Chapman and Sons. By 1961, George and Russell had taken over most of the farming operations and incorporated in 1967 as Chapman Bros. Farms. Today the 16,000 + acre farm (11,350 owned and 6,350 rented) is run by Darren, Parry and Robert Chapman with George and Russell helping out during the busy seasons.
From the start the Chapmans have been both creative and intuitive. From building hay sheds from materials available in their area (oil fitting pipe) to developing labour saving devices for loading hay bales, they have always succeeded in finding an efficient way to manage their time and resources. They have also been successful in recognizing value for their products – staying in small square bales, as a portion of their production, to service clients in both Canada and the U.S. when others were changing to large bales. In 2004, the farm completely converted to zero-till which they find has had many benefits; reduced wear and tear on equipment, reduced labor, protection of soil moisture, and protection of the soil. In recent years cattle have been reinstated on their farm. They have employed many environmentally beneficial practices to the livestock operation such as rotational grazing, solar pumped water to troughs, and bale grazing.
Education has always been a priority for the Chapman family resulting in some form of post secondary training for everyone involved in the business. They are early adopters of technology and have been using computers for the past 20 years to manage their business.
Staff is very important to the Chapman farm. They value their talents and dedication to the business. As Chapman Bros. Farms has grown they have been sure to provide their staff with benefits such as vacation pay, worker’s compensation, a health benefits account and clothing. Chapman’s now employ 3 full-time staff and 7 seasonal staff over and above the family workers. Len Skelton was the farm’s first full-time employee and still works for the farm after 40 years. Lionel Perroult worked for the farm for 27 years and sadly, recently passed away. Those workers alone signify the integrity and sincerity of the Chapman operation.
Congratulations to all the Chapmans who were recognized at a ceremony at the Red River Exhibition site on June 22, 2010!
Provincial Hay Competition Winners
The Chapmans have also placed in the Provincial Hay Competition Contest delivered by Manitoba Agriculture, Food & Rural Initiatives.