ONTARIO vs CHINESE
Ontario garlic, when in season, is the freshest garlic you can get, whereas Chinese garlic is typically in storage for several months before it gets to your pantry. Our massive cloves have a flavour profile that is simply lacking in the soft-neck Chinese varieties; however, it's not just the freshness, size, and flavour that make it cost more.
There are about 70 varieties of garlic grown in Ontario, but the majority is the hard-neck, porcelain garlic which you've probably seen at our stands. Soft-neck garlic doesn't produce a scape (remember those delicious guys you can get in June?) so it is much easier to mass-produce using mechanical farming methods. The hard-neck varieties we grow here require much more labour and are grown using stricter standards: a lot of the garlic grown in Ontario is organic or pretty darn close to it!
Despite the fact that we have over 2500 acres of garlic farm in Ontario, we still import about 70% of our garlic from China! Buying Ontario garlic supports our farms, is great for the local economy, and helps strengthen food security.