Red Fife is a Canadian heritage wheat variety that was first grown in 1842 by David Fife in Peterborough, Ontario from seeds brought from the Ukraine. Red Fife’s high protein content and beautiful red colour make an excellent bread flour, and it quickly became the primary wheat grown in North America.
Beginning in the early 1900s, Red Fife began to fall out of favour, replaced by new varieties that were more resistant to fungal diseases and pests, and more compatible with the new steel roller mills brought by the Industrial Revolution. Preserved in plant breeders’ seed collections, it fell into obscurity until being rediscovered in 1988 by Sharon Rempel, chief interpreter of The Grist Mill historic site in Keremeos, BC.
Since then, Red Fife’s popularity has grown in artisan baking circles. Over 500 tons was grown in 2007, and production has only increased. Westpoint is happy to be participating in the return of this delicious piece of Canadian history with the introduction of our new whole grain flour.