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About Us

At Silvio's Farm you can Pick Your Own Aronia Berries, buy Aronia Products or Racing Pigeons, Buy Books from our online store or let us publish your books.

Silvio's Aronia Farm


Silvio's Aronia Farm, home of one of Canada's best Pick Your Own Aronia Berries and is home to the Spanjaards/Janssen racing pigeons. We are located in one of the most picturesque and productive farming regions in the province of Ontario and only a few minutes north of the old town of Port Perry. Situated on a hill, we can see the surrounding countryside right to the horizon.

Aronia Farm - The Beginning

Aronia Planting Crew at Silvio's Farm

Silvio's Farm is a working farm, growing grain crops on its 101 acres. Our crops include soy, corn, barley, and wheat, but in 2010, 8 Acres were set aside for our love of Aronia Berries. Aronia berries top the antioxidant charts having one of the highest ORAC (oygen radical absorbanc capacity) ratings among fruits and vegetables.

In early 2010 we decided start our Aronia Farm and set out to import the Aronia plants for our fields. In late September 2010 a tractor trailer load of tiny 2.5 inch Aronia plants arrived at our farm.

Over a period of 3 days, with a crew of 8, 8 acres of these tiny 2.5 inch plants were hand planted, cared for naturally without pesticides, without herbicides,  without man made fertilizers. Our only tools were hoe, shovel, rake  wheelbarrow and scythe. Our venture was a  labor of “love, peace and joy” 

Aronia Berry - "Aronia Melanocarpa"

The Aronia berry is an indigenous North American berry that was traditionally found in the Eastern USA and Canada. The “Aronia berry” commonly called  “chokeberry” is a nutritionally dense whole food, it is a  rich source of antioxidants.

Aronia Berries in Silvio's HandsAronia berries contain both types of Polyphenols, anthocyanins and catechins. Aronia has a high level of phenolic acids, tannins, catechins and other active flavonoids , including quercitin, rutin,hesperidin, and procyanidin.  

Aronia berries have higher antioxidant levels than other berries. Not only are they low in sugar, they also contain beneficial nutrients, such as quercetin, quinic, minerals, and vitamins.

Aronia berries contain the highest levels of anthocyanins (the pigment in the berry that gives them their dark purplish-black color) and proanthocyanidins (plant-based super-antioxidants) when compared to many of the other well-known “superfruits."

Aronia Melanocarpa is a whole food, it is not a supplement!

Pick Your Own Aronia

Years have passed since we planted our tiny 2.5 inch Aronia plants and now each one of the plants provide us with a bountiful load of  Aronia Berries. Our Aronia Berries reach maturity in the early days of September and that is when our Pick Your Own Aronia Berry season begins. By late October the season has ended.

Pick Your Own Aronia at Silvio's Farm in Port PerryDuring Aronia Picking Season we are open daily 10 am to 6 pm. You are welcome to bring your own containers to put your aronia berries into, otherwise, Silvio's Farm offers 4-litre pails or larger for you to use.

When you arrive, please see one of our staff members and they will direct you to an area for picking. Once you have picked all your berries, you can head back up to our weigh station to weigh your berries and pay for what you have picked.

Drop on by, Pick Your Own Aronia Berries or just pick up a bottle of the 100% USDA Organic Aronia Concentrate that we also sell. Each 16 oz bottle contains 7 lbs of concentrated aronia.  Our concentrate is 100% pure Aronia, no water or any other fillers added.

If you don't have time to Pick Your Own Aronia Berries, give us a call and we can hand pick them for you.  In the off season we sell the hand picked Aronia Berries in 4lb frozen bags.

Racing Pigeons

Silvio has personally kept pigeons since the age of nine.  Silvio's Farm is dedicated to perpetuating the line of highly successful racing pigeons originally cultivated for over 37 years by that little-known (outside of Holland) Dutch Champion, Mr. Gerrit Spanjaards. Over many years, we have made it a point to give due credit to this soft-spoken National Winner and perennial Combine Champion. Our efforts to this end will continue for as long as we have our pigeons.

Honoring Your Source - Gerrit Spanjaards

Gerrit Spanjaard LoftGerrit Spanjaards was a consummate master. For thirty-seven years Gerrit Spanjaards was a Janssen specialist, a combine champion, and national winner. Spanjaards was one of those masters whose records attest impressively to his success! Only a handful of fanciers within Canada, the USA, Australia, etc., would ever have heard his name. His name and the quality of his pigeons were well-kept secrets in North America.

Mr. Spanjaards purchased his original Janssens direct from the Janssen Brothers of Arendonk, and over a period of 37 years, put his personal mark on his Janssen family. The Spanjaards/Janssens are a small- to medium-sized pigeon severely selected via performance only. The Spanjaards have a wonderful silky type of feather. They are possessed of incredibly strong yet corky bodies, with extreme musculature in both wing and breast. When you handle the birds you are struck with the sense of power in them, yet the muscle is not hard, it is soft and elastic!

Across North America, a great number of pigeon fanciers owe their success to the Janssen family of pigeons developed by Mr. Gerrit Spanjaards and they don't know it! They believe that what they have are Berkey Janssens or Koch Janssens or Sylvan Janssens or Jojos Janssens. These are the names that are heavily advertised in the journals, countless wins at club, combine, and federation levels, AU and CU champions, super breeders, numerous foundation sires, and much more.

However, I would suggest to you that nothing is new under the sun, and when last I looked, no fancier anywhere in the world had begun again from first principles and mated Smerle to Horseman, etc., to again originate a new strain of racing pigeon.

End of An Era

In the last few years of his life while terminally ill with cancer, Mr. Spanjaards achieved the following results:

1988 - Overall General Champion to 520 kilometers, Average Speed 1st, Pickbird 1st, Overall General Champion all races, including Fond (to which Spanjaards did not ship his birds)

1989 - General Champion to 520 kilometers, Average Speed 2nd, Pickbird 2nd.

1990 - Spanjaards only raced in the Vitesse races - Average Speed 2nd, Pickbird 2nd, Acebird 4th with NL-88-1357931 and 7th with NL-89-8717929.

Sadly, on December 6th, 1990, Gerrit Spanjaards died of terminal cancer, and so the culmination of 37 years of Janssen history was coming to a close.

New Beginning - Silvio's Spanjaards/Janssens

 In 1990, the entire Spanjaards loft-old birds, race team youngsters totaling 64 birds, plus ten Klaks, was imported to Canada. The Klaks and some of the Spanjaards were sold in two separate sales in New Jersey and in California along with quite a number of Smeulder's pigeons. The bulk of the Spanjaards pigeons were eventually retained by Silvio Mattacchione.  

Silvio's Racing PigeonsOur motto at Silvio's Farms is Progress Through Genetics, and to this end, we practice a very intense inbreeding program. It would not be overstating the facts to say that our entire loft traces back to one pair of pigeons, our foundation pair, "St. Thomas" (NL-83-8391269) and his mate "Deanna" (NL-84-400753). At sixteen, "St. Thomas" (NL-83-8391269) is still alive and well, although no longer fertile. "Deanna" (NL-84-400753).

Our inbreds are meant to be raced and raced hard. "Phar Lap" (CU-97-OGB-2074) is a prime example of our racing inbreds, having competed in ten races in nine weeks as a yearling in 1998 to eventually win the highest honor—1st Champion Old Bird of the 1998 Kawartha North Shore Combine! "Phar Lap" (CU-97-OGB-2074), along with the thirteen other inbreds that represented our entire old bird team, flew a total of 5236.59 km in nine weeks. Very few pigeons, regardless of breeding, can successful tolerate this type of activity.

Silvio's Farm has successfully exported its breeding stock to Australia, Japan, China, Taiwan, Mexico, Holland, Germany, the U. K., and the USA Our highly inbred Spanjaards/Janssens may be the exact cross that you have been searching for to produce that elusive hybrid vigor.

Silvio's Pigeon Articles

Communications Expertise: Writing and Press Releases: Over a period of many years my Pigeon Articles have appeared in leading pigeon journals around the world. We have raised many controversial issues that have caused great worldwide discussion. Unsolicited articles that we have written have caused great interest in and success for many fanciers in both North America and Europe. Should you require a detailed article for promotional, educational or Internet news or private website or sales purposes we are prepared to discuss your needs and arrive at an appropriate fee for making you look the very best that you can be.

Book Publishing

As book publishers, Silvio Mattacchione & Co a division of Silvio's Farm, designs, prints, and publishes quality books with inspiring content, as well as developing strategies and launching campaigns. Silvio published his first book on Racing Pigeons in 1986. It was a huge success and Silvio was hooked ever since.

Our mission is to produce books and related products of high quality and distinctive character, to encourage appreciation of nature and the environment, to contribute to international caring and cooperation, and through these, to enrich human experience in an interdependent world. Every book we publish must fulfill this mission. In short, we seek to educate, motivate, and inspire our clients.
   We are known worldwide not only as a book publishers but also known as a specialist publishers of books on pigeons, parrots, cage birds, poultry and waterfowl. We also do co-publications with publishers in different countries— especially the UK, South Africa, and Australia. Our Limited Edition archival books are in private collections and rare book collections worldwide.

Publishing is Our Forte!

At Silvio Mattacchione & Co., we oversee the publication of books. We receive many manuscripts-all of which we review. We publish several new titles per year-many from those submissions and some from foreign rights purchases.

Silvio Mattacchione PublishingAfter we have chosen a title, we set up a contract with the author(s), illustrator(s), photographer(s), and/or editor(s). From there, we move into the editing phase. We go back and forth between the author(s) and editor(s) and the editorial department, finalizing text content, length, and the title. Around this time we also choose a designer who begins work on the cover.

Once the book is edited, the text goes through a proofreader. We usually hire freelance proofreaders and designers. Once the book has been proofread, we give the designer the text to work on the interior of the book. We prepare sales materials from the edited text and the cover. The book goes between the designer, proofreader, and editorial department for finalizing.

When the designer is finished, we send it off for film to be made and then to be printed. Bluelines come back for a final proofing. This is to make sure that the printer does not have any errors on the film. When the books are printed, the shipment comes to us for distribution.

As soon as the books arrive, we send final copies to reviewers and distributors. We continue to sell the book as long as we keep it in print. When we run out of a book, we evaluate the sales and time span to determine if we will reprint it. Most of our specialty books are reprinted and have become important classics in our field.

The Private Chef - Richard Florczak

“The Private Chef” is typical of the books published or printed by Silvio Mattacchione & Co.  Written by Chef Richard Florczak the book The Private Chef -Hollywood’s Premier Private Chef & the Recipes & Techniques That Got Him There”. At the time the book was published, Richard had been the private chef to  several high profile “A-List” actors for more than fifteen years spent another 9 years as the exclusive chef for actor and director Mel Gibson. Jennifer Garner  wrote the foreword to Richards book . Richard in “The Private Chef”  provides a collective of favorite recipes. This award winning book is quite stunning in its color reproductions.


"I approached Silvio a few years back with an idea I had for a cookbook. One year later I had an internationally award winning book that I couldn't have dreamed of. Silvio facilitated every step from concept to layout to actual production. At a very fair cost no less! You may find other publishers that can do the job but none with the qualities that Silvio possess...honesty and integrity."

By : Richard Florczak - The Private Chef

Art Books

Silvio Mattacchione & Co. is pleased to offer its services to artists and photographers. Creating a book can be a frightening experience for the uninitiated. However, done with style and class, a good art book can readily enhance an artist's credibility. Art books definitely enhance, dare I say boost, print sales. With a creative effort, all profit-that is, both artist and gallery. A published book enhances the artist, and book sales are a profitable addition to any gallery's print business.

Why You Were Born Print & Production by Silvio Mattacchione & Co.Most artists do not fully realize that art books can be an incredible tool in developing much-needed customers as well as fully marketing an artist. Galleries do, however, recognize that an artist's show and book signing can translate into hefty sales.

Books can be used as not only promotional items but also as gifts or purchase bonuses. Books really do sell themselves!

If you are a photographer or artist interested in enhancing your credibility and reputation and have thought of publishing a book, call us. We can make it happen in full color, on time and on budget. We will take care of everything-we have everything in house: our own designers, our own scanners, our own typesetting.

Why You Were Born - Jerry Downs

Jerry Downs is an artist, photographer and writer who lives 10 miles North of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Rafael, California. His work has appeared throughout the world in books, magazines and museums. He was born the 5th of 11 children, had a horrible time in school and spent most of his life living hand to mouth trying to make a living and make sense of why he was born. Eventually he stopped trying so hard. Everything that has happened in his life has helped him understand that life is a creative act and joy is the only measure of success. He’s happy to be alive and enormously appreciative that anything exists at all.


  • "I will be forever grateful to Silvio Mattacchione for his assistance in producing my book, “Why You Were Born”. His expertise saved me money to be sure, but what impresses me the most was his hands-on personal manner that guided me through the printing process. He foresaw the questions that I didn't even know to ask. When you get Silvio you get a lot and you also get his team. As a photographer, getting the finest reproductions was particularly important to me. Master printer, Albert Tham at .....Press in Singapore, paid attention to the quality of every image on every page. I could not have been happier with the results. If you wish to talk to me personally, please feel free to call me anytime at my home in San Francisco. I would do anything to help support Silvio. In doing so I would simply be modeling the way he has so supported me."
  • By : Jerry Downs 1-415-686-2639

Thinking of Publishing

If you are interested in publishing a book, discussing a potential project or if you have a manuscript that you would like us to look at, Call or Contact us. Publisher, photographer, fine artist, corporation, not for profit or self-publisher a call to Silvio at Silvio's Farm begins your journey to creating an award-winning quality book produced on time and budget!

Our Book Store

Silvio's Farm Book Store

As publisher's of fine books for many years we have accumulated an abundant collection of books that we are now making available through our online book store. Many specifically in the area of pet birds and other animals, which includes books about parrots, pigeons, racing pigeons, poultry, waterfowl, peafowl, farm animals, rabbits, dogs, hunting, guns, skunks, fish, snakes, and other small animals.

You can also find some Very Rare used Pigeon Books in our store.

Some of our books that have been in storage or on our shelves for years may have some defects. These books even though they have never been sold or read, we will deem them as a used book in our store. The condition of the book will be listed in the description.