Kornel was born and raised on a dairy farm in Switzerland. His agricultural studies and training took him around Denmark, Canada, and the French part of Switzerland. This spurred his desire to farm abroad, and at the age of 23, Kornel purchased 330 acres of farmland in Curran, ON and established Ferme Rêveuse.
In 1999, Kornel met Olga on a trip to Ukraine. A year later and despite not having a farming background, Olga moved to Canada to work on and manage the farm together with Kornel.
They now have four children; Sabrina, Marlena, and twins Katrina and Rupert. Kornel and Olga are grateful to raise their young family on the farm, where their children can be involved in age-appropriate work and small duties to learn responsibilities.
To continue this work while the war carries on in Ukraine, we brought farmers (along with an official and a translator) to Canada in April 2023. Over two weeks, they gained knowledge, training and field experience - and were hopefully able to take a break from the mental and physical toll of the war.**
We hope these farmers’ experience and training here will be shared with those back home.
To offset some of the costs of travel, accommodations, and fees to bring the farmers here, we set up a fundraiser for folks who wish to contribute to this project. In addition, $1 from each package of pelmeni (dumplings) sold was redirected to this program. Our pelmeni are produced at our on-farm production kitchen by Ukrainian refugees. With the help of our community, we were able to raise about $2000CAD. Thank you!
* To learn more about this project, watch this video which talks about the Ukraine Dairy Business Development's (UDBD) achievements in 2021.
** Check out the Co-op Union Rivnopravnist Facebook page to see what we accomplished during their visit in April 2023.
Robyn Miller, CBC News Ottawa
July 18, 2016
Laura Robin, Ottawa Citizen
August 09, 2016
Isabelle Brisbois, Le Droit
22 mars 2022
Saison 1 | Épisode 1 (Français), tou.tv
27 juin 2022
Andrew McClelland, QCNA
June 29, 2022
Established in 1993, Ferme Rêveuse was named after Rêveuse–the offspring of Kornel’s favourite cow, Gibrouille, while in the first year of his apprenticeship; gifted to him when he finished his training.
Producing mainly grass-fed milk for many years, Kornel and Olga were able to add pasture-raised chickens to the operation in 2016, under a new artisanal chicken program. Eventually expanding to pastured/free-run eggs and building their own grading station in 2019. In 2020, Ferme Rêveuse started producing grass-fed beef and real veal.
In 2019, Olga created Wild Ferment to share her passion for all things fermented, featuring small-batch kombucha as her flagship product, as well as sauerkraut.