Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Sprague Foods

Sprague Foods. Made in Canada since 1925.

In 1925, J. Grant Sprague built his first cannery in the village of Mountain View, Ontario, naming it J.G. Sprague & Sons Canning Co. They have been canning in the Prince Edward County region ever since. During the 1920’s and 30’s, canned goods from the Mountain View plant were shipped via boat from Belleville and Picton to Montreal, Toronto, and even Western Canada. In 2009, Rick Sprague, Grant’s great-grandson, became Sprague Foods’ fourth generation president. Rick has steered the business toward a focus on healthy foods with natural ingredients.

London Drugs is proud to carry a delicious range of Sprague Organic Soups, including Organic Tuscany Minestrone, Organic Lentil & Vegetable, Organic Tomato Red Pepper and Organic Sweet Potato Curry.

 

All Sprague products are pressure-cooked for preservation in 100% BPA-free packaging, and their organic certified products contain no preservatives.

“Having been around for so long as a canner, we know from experience that Canadian farmers grow the best organic crops on the planet,” says Rick Sprague, “This is why we only use 100% Canadian-grown organic beans and lentils in our delicious pantry-friendly organic soups. Grown in Canada, canned in Canada, for Canadians. And future Canadians, too!”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Silver Hills

For a real Canadian treat, check out this Silver Hills plant-based Bacon Grilled Cheese Recipe.

From an idea sprouted in Lumby, BC, Silver Hills Bread is now a Canadian classic from coast to coast.

When Silver Hills co-founder Brad Brousson was a boy, his mom baked bread with sprouted whole grains from a family recipe. Years later, Brad was attending a health retreat at the Silver Hills Guesthouse in Lumby, BC, and decided he should bake some for the other guests there. This quickly expanded into a full-time project, so Brad partnered with friends Stan and Kathy Smith, and Silver Hills Sprouted Bakery was born.

 

 

“Thirty years ago, if you were organic, you were a bit crazy,” says Stan Smith. “But now there’s a lot of people who are crazy along with us. I think the healthy food community is looking for companies to provide new ideas and solutions and we look forward to being part of that and to discovering ways to make it easier to eat healthy.”

The health difference begins with the sprout. This early growth of the plant unlocks iron, magnesium, zinc, B vitamins, and other important vitamins and minerals, and makes the seeds easier to digest. Sprouted whole grains also offer a healthy, slow-release carb to give your body steady energy.

 

 

All of Silver Hills’ 100% plant-based products are made with nutrient-rich, high-fibre whole grains sprouted in clean, cold Canadian water. Each ingredient is guaranteed non-GMO.

 

Silver Hills Bakery soon outgrew its humble home in the North Okanagan and moved the entire sprouted bakery to Abbotsford in 2002. They’ve been a Proudly Canadian part of the community ever since, and London Drugs is proud to feature their breads across Western Canada.

“When we began the bakery, the sole intent was to aid people in their quest for health,” reflects Brad. “It makes me feel very fulfilled to know that all of the effort and all of the sacrifice that went into making Silver Hills what it is today is really contributing to someone’s happiness, and someone’s health.”

 

 

London Drugs Proudly Canadian Brand Series – Raincoast Trading

First Nations owned Raincoast takes Canadian snacking to a whole new level. On the pristine coast of Vancouver Island, the ocean has been a giver of life for generations. Here, Raincoast Trading (part of the Nuu-Chah-Nulth Seafood enterprise) creates its famed Salmon Jerky, made from 100% wild caught salmon. This hook & line fishing method helps protect other ocean species and ensures 100% traceability from the boat to the package. The ingredient list is refreshingly pure too, including minced wild chum and/or pink salmon, organic sugar, sea salt, canola oil , spices and natural hardwood smoke. That’s it!

The company that makes these delicious products has been a family-run Canadian west coast institution for over 50 years. After gaining international attention for their products at Expo 86 in Vancouver, St. Jean’s Cannery & Smokehouse expanded with a number of depots in the Lower Mainland and the Vancouver Island communities of Campbell River and Port Alberni. They also acquired Raincoast Trading, highly respected for their sustainable fishing practices and connections with retail markets in the USA and Canada.

In 2015, ownership of these enterprises was transferred to the Nuu-chah-nulth – five Indigenous nations. With a long and proud history as stewards and participants in BC’s seafood economy, the Nuu-Chah-nulth are committed to ensuring these gifts that the ocean gives us will be cherished and passed along in good health to our grandchildren’s grandchildren. Now Raincoast also offers their Global line of Skipjack Tuna products, using fish caught in the Maldives, with the same dedication to sustainability and quality. So the next time you reach for a snack, have a taste of Canadian history, and toast to our shared future.

 

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Lise Watier

Lise Watier – Cosmetics developed by Canadian scientists, harnessing the power of Canadian nature.

The deep forests of Quebec may not be the first things that come to mind when you visualize high-end beauty products. But that’s exactly where the scientists of Lise Watier got their newest inspiration. Labrador Tea has naturally evolved incredible protective and regenerative mechanisms in order to survive in Québec’s rigorous climate. Harnessing the properties of this hardy plant for cosmetics is an exclusive innovation developed by Lise Watier Cosmetics in collaboration with researchers at l’Université du Québec à Chicoutimi.

Lise Watier’s Canadian roots run deep.

Lise Watier was born in Montreal in 1942, created a self-improvement and makeup course company in 1965 and launched her own line of cosmetics in 1972. Besides building an iconic Canadian cosmetics brand, her entrepreneurial spirit has also extended to philanthropy.

In 2009, Madame Watier founded the Lise Watier Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to empowering women and girls in need with the chance at a better life, donating 100% of proceeds generated from sales of Rouge Plumpissimo – Rose Tendresse lipstick and Sparkle of Hope lip gloss. Since 2010, these two products have raised over $1,000,000 in funds.

In 2016, Lise Watier Cosmetics joined Groupe Marcelle Inc. to become the largest Canadian company in the beauty industry.

Together with Groupe Marcelle’s other renowned brands, Lise Watier Cosmetics employs almost 350 people and distributes some 450 products to over 1,500 points of sale across Canada, as well as online across North America. So if you are looking for the finest Canadian makeup, fragrance and skin care products, you could go to the forests of Quebec – or you could just come down to your local London Drugs.

Proudly Canadian – Vitacore

Vitacore steps to the Canadian Front Line with CAN-95 Masks

Before the Covid-19 pandemic hit, the idea of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) was far from the minds of most Canadians. Now, a mask is one of the things we can’t forget every time we leave the house.

Vitacore is the first Canadian manufacturer of PPE authorized by Health Canada, manufacturing locally in Burnaby B.C. Every part of their mask and respirator process is entirely Canadian; Canadian innovation, Canadian manufactured and made with respect for our Canadian environment.

“When COVID-19 hit, we saw the need to ensure that our communities, particularly frontline workers, have a consistent high-quality supply of PPE,” said Mikhail Moore, president of Vitacore, “Our mission and commitment is to homegrown innovation that protects Canadians, allows our country to be self-sustaining, and creates local jobs.”

Vitacore is a collaborative corporation of Canadian doctors, scientists, engineers, and business leaders. Even the development of the CAN-95 mask was Canadian. Researchers at McMaster University’s  Centre of Excellence in Protective Equipment Materials provided expertise to help develop fabric and determine the best machines for production. Testing was completed by the National Research Council of Canada.

As Canadians get ready to return to a safe and healthy everyday life. Vitacore helps make sure we are protected and prepared for whatever comes next.

That’s a can-do attitude all Canadians can wear proudly.

 

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Bremner’s – Pure Juice That’s Good For a Whole Country

Terry Bremner, Founder of Bremner Foods, describes their company in typically understated Canadian style. “We’re just a company on the farm, trying to make the best product in the world,” he says. From their roots in the rich soils of Delta, BC, Bremner Foods is literally growing Canadian success from the ground up.

It all started with local land, and local berries.

Bremner’s is family owned, by 3rd generation blueberry and cranberry farmers. “My parents came to Delta in the 1950’s, and we’ve been doing various farming in the Delta area since then,” Bremner says. Two mainstays of their line are pure blueberry and cranberry juice. Both of these berries are native to North America and grow particularly well in BC. “On two sides of our property is Burns Bog,” Bremner continues, “It gives the berries a more intense flavour, being close to their native soil.”

Better juice for healthier Canadians

“Our goal is to make premium products that are healthy and nutritious,” says Bremner, “All the hard work and dedication is worth it when customers tell us that our juice is the best, or how our juice is helping with medical issues.” Berries are well known for their antioxidant content, especially blueberries. One jar of Bremner’s contains the pure juice of two-and-a-half pounds of blueberries, providing a natural Canadian health boost. Bremner puts it simply: “Your fuel that goes in you is your energy that comes out.” The Bremner team proves the point, participating in 50-kilometer races and other events, fueled by Bremner’s Juices.

Premium, clean, quality and workmanship – Canadian values straight from the farm.

“Canada is known for the best country, clean air and water, and quality products.” Bremner says. And these values are shared with their London Drugs partnership. “We have been in London Drugs for over 10 years. We really appreciate London Drugs being a Canadian company, and the Louie family’s long Canadian history.”
We’ll toast to that – with a tall cool glass of Bremner’s juice.

Shop for Bremner’s juice online at LondonDrugs.com.

Proudly Canadian Brand Stories – Hardbite Chips – Real Canadian People, Places and Flavour

“Honestly, our packaging is one of our most Canadian statements,” says Hardbite Marketing Manager Darlene McIntosh, “ It is with Canadian-made pride that we designed our packaging to profile Canadian destinations with nature-loving lifestyle imagery.  On every bag we feature the Canadian flag, and a real place with real people.”

But what you see on the shelf is just the beginning. Hardbite Chips have Canadian qualities right to the bottom of the bag.

Independently owned, and proudly made right here in BC.

Hardbite Chips are made in Surrey, in British Columbia’s only potato chip manufacturing facility. There, chips are cooked in small batches, for the ultimate in crunch and taste. Company ownership is local, too. The people that run the company work in the same building as the people who run the spicing drums.

“Made in Canada is a badge of honour,” says McIntosh, “And as an independently owned Canadian company, we will continue to wave that flag proudly.”

Fun Chips, with Serious Canadian Values

Like the potatoes they use, the Hardbite philosophy is solidly rooted.

“When people choose to buy Canadian, that means they are choosing to support their community, grow the economy, and sustain a strong and fairly treated workforce,” says McIntosh, “Beyond that, buying Canadian also means peace of mind, as manufacturing is highly regulated, consumers can be assured products are safe.”

But the Hardbite team never likes to be too heavy. “We communicate with each other, we say what we mean and we don’t hold back,” says McIntosh, “Because snacking should be fun, people!”

Keep on Exploring, Keep on Snacking!

The Hardbite philosophy is inspired by Canada’s wide open spaces. It’s a sense of adventure that has led to the development of an amazing array of flavours, including such ‘out there’ varieties as Spicy Dill, Chipotle Raspberry Parsnip and a whole line cooked in avocado oil.

“We love exploring,” McIntosh continues, “Whether it’s going for a long walk in the woods or blasting down a muddy mountain trail on a bike, it’s all about celebrating nature. And what better way to celebrate an adventure than to scarf down a bag of all-natural chips that taste awesome.”

Bring it on!

Shop Hardbite products online here.

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