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Award-winning docuseries 'Flat Out Food' features Moose Jaw area farmer

Christie Whelan is a local farmer featured on a recent episode of the Saskatchewan-based docuseries, “Flat Out Food,” which aims to connect people with the food they eat
Christie Whelan (pictured) is the owner of Whelan Organic Farms located just south of Moose Jaw and was recently featured on an episode of Flat Out Food, "Chickpea."

Christie Whelan is a local farmer featured on a recent episode of the Saskatchewan-based docuseries, “Flat Out Food.” The series aims to connect people with their food and the goal is to encourage viewers to get curious about what they eat and forge new relationships with those who prepare it.

Whelan farms just 16 kilometres south of Moose Jaw and is the owner of Whelan Organic Farms. His chickpeas are currently sold at The Wandering Market.

His practice highlights the core value of the series by possessing an undercurrent of passion and deep concern for the planet while he discovers a new approach to food production.

“People are so disconnected from their food,” Whelan said. “I think for people to have an understanding of where their food comes from (is important).”

Whelan’s farm is situated on land that is by no means virgin soil, but he’s looking to return it to a healthy, balanced ecosystem once again.

“Well, I never really liked chemicals,” he said, noting that his approach utilizes a holistic approach to farming rather than conventional, industrial practices.

“In nature, you don’t see a mono crop… Nature needs different plants in different places – even in a small field – to balance everything,” he continued. “And I tried to, in a way, replicate that.”

Whelan views the soil as “the primary terrestrial ecosphere,” which produces all the foodstuffs and nutrients for plants, animals, and humans to flourish on the planet. This critically important layer is only around six inches deep and is arguably the basis for life on Earth.

He treats this critical ecosystem as nature intended and he achieves this by carefully selecting and rotating the plants he introduces to the space, aerates the soil, and does all he can to encourage life – including the worms, helpful bacteria, and other sources of nutrients – to flourish.

“What that does is encourages all the life that’s in the soil to do my job,” he noted. “I stand back and watch the worms and the nematodes… and all that stuff develop an ecosystem that actually is what supplies my plants with the proper nutrients. That’s my goal.”

Flat Out Food is a Regina-based docuseries that aims to showcase the field to plate journey of the foods we eat. The series focuses on innovative large-scale enterprises and small-scale, independent operations in the province and includes the farmers who grow the food and the chefs who expertly prepare it.

The show's large-scale operations include Three Farmers, featured in the "Chickpea" episode alongside Whelan, and Compass Minerals, the owner and operator of a salt mine near Unity, Sask. Cultural sites including the Remai Modern Museum in Saskatoon and the Wanuskewin Indigenous cultural heritage site have also been featured.

On the episode “Chickpea,” Swift Current-based chefs Shaun Hanna, Derek Sandercock, and Chriel Pangilinan at Nightjar used Whelan’s farm-fresh chickpeas to craft a dish that made the most of the key ingredient.

“(If) you want to talk about artists, (Hanna is) an artist when it comes to chickpeas,” Whelan said as he reminisced about the meal he described as “unbelievable.”

The docuseries just aired its season finale concluding season four on April 3.

Following the COVID-19 epidemic – the founding era of Flat Out Food which was first aired in 2020 – the docuseries hopes to change the atmosphere of it’s originating circumstances and provide a show viewers recognize as a comforting and unifying idea.

“It’s peaceful; it’s comforting; (and) it’s beautiful. It has impactful messages. And our director of photography, Adam Burwell, and our camera operator Preston Kanak are incredibly talented,” said Jenn Sharp, the show's host and co-producer. 

This talented crew also includes Moose Jaw resident Steve Leidal, who creates original scores as the show’s composer.

“I think we’re living in a time where divisiveness has become the norm, and it’s not something I want to give energy to. I think Flat Out Food is a unifying force in Saskatchewan,” Sharp added.

Although centred in Saskatchewan, Flat Out Food has spread to a national-level audience and has reached viewers as far away as Australia and Poland.

“We get feedback from all over the world about how much people love the show and love learning about food, agriculture, and where it comes from,” Sharp said.

This ever-increasing scope helps put local entrepreneurs, artisans, and agricultural producers in front of a large audience and will no doubt contribute to the growing trend of healthier food and agricultural practices.

“I’ve never done anything like this before. It has been the most amazing experience I’ve had. And, you know, to be able to tell the world about how we can do things that helps Mother Earth again just reinforces my whole passion for doing this,” Whelan concluded.

To view the docuseries, visit Whelan’s operation is featured on season four, episode four: “Chickpea.”

To learn more about Whelan’s farm, visit

If you’re interested in being featured on an episode of Flat Out Food, reach out to

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