I guess you could say farming runs in my family's blood. In Italy, outside of Naples, Liborio Padula, my great great grandfather, was raised in a family where a good day was defined by waking up early to work the land and raise food for his family. As times became trying in 1906, he came to America and migrated to Ohio to start a life as a young man. He had only the clothes he wore and no money. Staying true to his spirit, he found work in farming. By 1925, he and his son Augustine were able save enough to start farming their own piece of land (26 acres) at Fairport Nurseries in Painesville, OH. After military service in World War II, he happily returned from service and was able to further expand.
What business grows in the depression and through a war? Not many. What Liborio, Augustine and my father Liborio did differently was their approach to customers. To them, customers were like family. They wanted to provide the best and freshest produce (vegetables and fruits) that could be grown in Ohio's rich soil but punishing climate.
Perhaps it is with all things grown with love and passion for excellence--- they just taste better! I bring this same philosophy to your table.
During my early teens, I began having health issues and was unaware what was causing it.
After many doctor visits, procedures and endless blood work, my mom and I were assured there was 'nothing wrong' with me despite my feeling horrible. It literally consumed me-- the endless cycle of the effects of eating 'normal' food and discomfort. Thanks to the early internet, I researched celiac disease (gluten sensitivity) and found some relief in cutting out wheat from my diet. However, I would still have bouts of stomach pains. Then, I cut out dairy which helped somewhat. I started talking to my family and friends. Two nephews, a niece and so many friends with food allergies opened up to me about their own gastrointestinal problems with foods. In our modern society, we don't even know what our food sources are subjected to-- pesticides, chemicals and antibiotics aimed to make plants grow faster, bigger and stronger. What's lost is nutritional value and what's gained can often be hard to explain symptoms and food sensitivities. There I was pretty much on the most restrictive diet you could imagine. From this dark place, I decided to try something new and use my familial 'green thumb'. Aware Organics was born.