Norenda Ag & Construction

Norenda AG Norenda Constructions LTD

About Norenda

Founded by Jaroslav (Gerry) Mirko Norek, a hardworking individual born near Plunkett, SK in 1917, Norenda Ag and Construction has emerged as a testament to resilience and progress. Gerry began his journey as a hired hand in Gerald, the very place where Norenda Ag stands today, back in 1935. The farm he worked on was initially homesteaded by another Czech family who had come to Saskatchewan for a fresh start after struggling in South Dakota.

Nine years into his farmhand role, Gerry married Mary Glazer. As a wedding gift, his employer bestowed upon him the worst six quarter sections of land. To Gerry, this gesture symbolized recognition of his hard work, dedication, and loyalty. Over the next 15 years, Gerry gradually rented more land from his employer until he finally purchased the entire farm in 1959. During this time, Gerry and Mary welcomed four children into their family, including their son Giles, born in 1951.

Giles grew up observing his father tirelessly farming and managing cattle. As he reached his teenage years, Giles eagerly joined the farm, ready to contribute meaningfully. However, the journey was not without its challenges. One significant hurdle was the expansion from 11 quarters in 1966 to 68 quarters in 1968. With ambitious goals in mind, Giles and his father purchased three brand-new IHC 915 self-propelled combines from Rocanville for $21,500 each. Despite skepticism from onlookers, Giles remained steadfast in his belief that their decisions would lead to success.

Another challenge came in the form of Gerry’s unwavering commitment to maintaining a 500-cow operation until 1978. However, Giles eventually reached his limit and made the difficult decision to transition the focus solely to grain farming. This shift was met with resistance, even resulting in physical altercations for Giles due to his decision to phase out the cattle. Nonetheless, he persisted, driven by his vision of an efficient farm.

Giles, along with his father and his brother-in-law Douglas Lomenda, married to Giles’ sister Laura, embarked on rapid expansion throughout the 1970s. The addition of Douglas and his six brothers, who worked on the farm at various stages, brought tremendous effort and support better canola varieties and improved crop protection products propelled their progress. Yet, success remained elusive, with financial crises looming on multiple occasions. Insolvency was an all-too-familiar specter, but the family’s determination remained unyielding.

By the end of the 1970s, the trio had successfully eliminated their seven-figure debt, coinciding with a surge in canola prices to $8 per bushel. The bountiful harvest allowed them to sell 110 carloads of canola in one year, further boosting their financial standing. However, with newfound wealth came the challenge of understanding and managing their finances effectively. The burden of income tax and high-interest rates in the 1980s pushed them back into debt briefly, but they remained resilient.

In 1990, Clayton, Douglas’ son, began farming full-time, and three years later, Gerry officially sold his shares and stepped back from the farm. Dallas (Giles’ son), and his wife Audra returned to the farm in 2000, ready to carry on the family legacy. Dallas, having studied agronomy and worked as a grain merchant, brought valuable insights and connections to further enhance the farm’s operations.

In 2007, recognizing the need to provide meaningful work and full-time employment to key team members, Norenda Construction was born. This extension of their operations undertook diverse projects, including derailment cleanup, commodities hauling, rig matting installation, snowplowing, gravel stemming for seismic holes, and more. Today, with a dedicated team of 35 full-time workers and a fleet of 10 Super B’s and 10 Delivery Trucks, Norenda Construction operates seamlessly, ensuring projects are executed with precision and excellence.

As Norenda Ag and Construction continue their rapid expansion, they remain rooted in the belief that the right people can overcome any obstacle. Their unwavering philosophy of never ceasing, persisting through challenges, and shunning complacency has propelled them forward. The farm’s footprint has grown to over 40,000 acres, with a commitment to preserving natural bushlands and wetlands alongside agricultural operations.

As Norenda Ag and Construction journey into the future, they carry the lessons and wisdom imparted by previous generations. Their unwavering philosophy of never stopping, working hard, and never growing too comfortable has been the driving force behind their remarkable journey. Through perseverance, adaptability, and a commitment to excellence, Norenda Ag and Construction have carved out a lasting legacy that spans generations.

Dallas Norek, Giles Norek & Clayton Lomenda

Dallas Norek

Giles Norek

Clayton Lomenda

Norenda Ag Construction Team