Throughout the province, British Columbians are able to buy local, home-grown flavours right from their own backyards. Today, Burnaby is among the thriving communities producing many diverse, local products and promoting buying local.
The provincial government’s Buy Local Program helps B.C. farmers and food processors promote their products and supports food supply security in B.C. The program is providing over $155,000 of funding to several Burnaby-based companies to help increase sales and brand awareness.
At Burnaby’s Urban Digs Farm, keeping it local and knowing where your food comes from is a priority and a promise. The farmers at Urban Digs provide pasture-raised meat, eggs and organically grown produce from their farm and from other local farms who share their values.
Sugar-Free sweetener manufacturer, NutraEx Foods, has their world headquarters in Burnaby. The company promotes their products as indulgent natural sweeteners with zero calories and zero compromises. SugarLike brand sweeteners are available at Whole Foods Markets, Urban Fare, and hundreds of natural food stores all over the province.
Chai Chics Meals is offering British Columbians a line of locally produced Middle Eastern dishes called Feast. The all-natural frozen ready meals include Lamb and Eggplant Stew, Pomegranate Chicken Stew, Jewel Rice and Saffron Rice. The local company hopes to build a strong customer base in B.C.
The Buy Local program has received $8 million in B.C. government funding since 2012 to increase sales of locally grown and processed agrifood and seafood products within the province.
The B.C. government’s Agrifood and Seafood Strategic Growth Plan supports the building of domestic markets and maintaining a secure food supply. The plan is a component of the BC Jobs Plan, and the roadmap to leading the agrifoods sector to becoming a $15-billion-a-year industry by 2020.
The provincial government's Buy Local program is administered by the Investment Agriculture Foundation of British Columbia. Applications are available at: http://iafbc.ca/funding-opportunities/buy-local/
Richard Lee, Burnaby North MLA –
“The Buy Local Program supports local businesses to help them succeed and help get their product out all over the province, including companies right here in Burnaby. Each recipient of the funding is creating jobs for British Columbians and keeping hard earned dollars in the pockets of B.C’s farmers and producers.”
Rajinder Bagga, vice-president, Jiva Organics –
“At Jiva Organics, we strive to source our ingredients as locally as possible to support the community around us. Our products are certified organic and kosher to ensure our customers are getting a healthy and delicious food product. Because majority of our foods are manufactured in B.C., we are able to keep jobs in B.C. Thanks to the Buy Local funding we are receiving, we can share our products with more British Columbians around the province and continue to offer quality certified organic foods from B.C. for the whole family to enjoy.”
Julia Smith, co-founder, Urban Digs Farm –
“The Buy Local funding allowed us to connect better with our existing customers and to reach out to new customers who are looking for a trustworthy source of locally produced food.”
Lily Zou, founder, NurtaEx Foods –
“We are making the world a better place by helping people eat healthy and by partnering with the Buy Local Program we hope to reach more customers all over the province. With NutraEx, you can cut out the sugar and still enjoy the delicious sweet taste by using SugarLike in place of sugar.”
Celena Benndorf, Chai Chics Meals –
“We are driven by the desire to make food that helps make a better world. We do that by making ready-meals that are nutritious, delicious, all-natural, with no chemicals or additives, and that are locally produced here in B.C. The Buy Local program has given us the opportunity to communicate that Feast is made right here in B.C., which we know means so much to our customers.”
Find out more about Jiva Organics and the products they offer: http://jivaorganics.ca/
For more information about Urban Digs Farm, visit: http://www.urbandigsfarm.com/
Check out NutreEx’s story and where you can find them: http://nutraex.com/
To learn more about Chai Chics Meals, visit: http://d1.wikads.net/~feastwik/
A backgrounder follows.