“We’re celebrating the discovery of insulin!”
2021 marks the 100th anniversary of the discovery of insulin, one of the most significant medical discoveries of the 20th century, by researchers Dr. Frederick Banting and Charles Best at the University of Toronto.
“This year the corn maze features an insulin bottle with the years 1921-2021 written within a Canadian maple leaf. It also features the work of JDRF – an organization here in Canada creating awareness for Type One Diabetes and supporting, connecting and funding the best Type One research around the world.” explains Rachel Kraay, who, together with her husband own the Kraay Family Farm.
In the century since the breakthrough that historic summer of 1921, insulin has saved and improved the lives of millions of people with diabetes—here in Canada and across the globe.
“We have a very personal connection to this celebration of the discovery of insulin and also to JDRF. Our daughter has Type One Diabetes and insulin literally keeps her alive. We are very excited to work with JDRF to raise awareness about Type One Diabetes and the need to fund the research needed to make this relentless and horrible disease easier to manage and maybe one day find a cure,” continues Rachel Kraay, owner of the Kraay Family Farm.
Before insulin treatment, a diagnosis of type 1 diabetes (T1D) meant inevitable death for children. T1D is an autoimmune disease where the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the cells in the pancreas that make insulin critical to maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. There are no therapies available yet to prevent it, and the causes are not yet fully understood.
While there have been many advancements in technology and delivery of insulin over the past 100 years; either by injection or pump, it remains the only treatment for T1D.
JDRF has been finding, funding, and connecting the best type 1 diabetes (T1D) research around the world for over 50 years. As a result, they have supported almost every key T1D research breakthrough since their inception. Their sustained investment in focused areas, strategic partnerships with industry, and the drive to accelerate progress has led to transformational change and exponential investments by other sources of support in many areas of T1D research.
The corn maze itself covers 15 acres of land and over 5 kilometres of trails. The Kraay Family Farm covers many more acres than just the maze and includes over 40 activities and attractions – including several new ones this year! The Kraay family will host many special days over the course of the season including Sunflower Days again this year throughout the month of August. “We will make sure we announce the sunflower bloom on our social media and let our guests know when it’s a great time to come,”continues Rachel Kraay. “Make sure to plan a trip in August so you can take some photos in the sunflower fields and take some home to brighten up your home!”
The Kraay Family Farm, together with the maze, covers over 40 acres and also includes over 40 different games and attractions including giant jumping pillows, a low ropes course, pedal carts, farm animals, mini zip lines, tiny crooked playhouses, a giant corn barn, slides, an 18-hole mini golf course, fun fair food, snacks and more! Sunflower Days begin in August with Pumpkin Days to follow in September and October.