to the above sponsors for their support of sound bits,
Local Flavours Products & Services Co-operative,
and the Recipe for Success Program.
A new year brings new challenges and
new opportunities, while winter itself brings the chance
to rest and regenerate. Under the snow (or the puddles),
life prepares for its new cycle of growth.
What is clear from our newsletter
this month is SSFPA's commitment to its membership and
to the small food sector as a whole.
Working with our members and with
other groups with complementary goals is a mandate which
we renew - and express - as we wait for Spring.
Channel Opportunity: BC Specialty Foods Directory
Our goal at the Small Scale
Food Processor Association is to develop sustainability for small
to medium size food processors and producers and to assist in providing
market opportunities. As part of this commitment, our Association
is pleased to announce the creation of a new web-based specialty
foods directory for British Columbia.
SSFPA invites all specialty
food producers and processors to participate in this new, online,
province-wide directory of BC-grown specialty foods and BC-processed
specialty foods. Our organization is creating the directory,
but participants aren't required to be members. Our goal is to provide
small scale producers and processors throughout the province with
greater access to alternative sales channels and a simpler, faster
and more convenient way for the food service industry to source
A communications plan will be
implemented to alert the potential end users of the directory. There
are no costs associated for being listed in the directory; however
eligibility criteria do exist as listed in the form. The directory
is scheduled to be online by March 31, 2006.
Please send in your Directory
application form as soon as you can to allow sufficient time
for data base input. The return methods are listed on page 6 of
the application form which is available online at www.ssfpa.net.
If you have questions regarding
this initiative, please contact Candice Appleby. Call her toll free
at 1-866-54-SSFPA (77372) or email her at email@example.com.
our Members and Working with Others: SSFPA is Busy!
- This weekend, January 27 and 28, Future
Corp is hosting the "Business Is Growing" conference,
open to all who are interested in starting or growing a farm business.
The key note speaker for the Saturday morning session is SSFPA
Board of Director member Kim Stansfield presenting "The Business
of Farming." SSFPA Board Member Pat Reichert is participating
on the panel discussion session titled "Big Ideas for Small
Farms - Innovative Farm Revenue Diversification."
- SSFPA is also participating in the Pacific
Agriculture Conference. Candice Appleby will be presenting on
behalf of the the Association, along with BC Association of Farmers
Markets Executive Coordinator Bertie Wells. Included in the presentation
will be the BC Specialty Food
- SSFPA will make a presentation at the Certified
Organic Associations of BC (COABC) conference February 24-26,
2006. Board Members Pat Reichert, Kika Joy, Terry Ackerman, and
Kim Stansfield will be guest presenters.
- We applaud the British Columbia AgriTourism
Alliance on their Marketing Caravan and thank
their representatives for passing along information about the
SSFPA as they travel the province in the coming weeks.
Welcome to Merv Sloss
SSFPA welcomes a new Board Member (and Supporter
Member) Merv Sloss. Merv, his wife Rhonda and daughters Morgan and
Erika have operated Willowbrook Farms, a six-acre certified organic
farm in Creston, BC, for the past 10 years. They have personally
marketed local produce throughout the Kootenies, Southern Alberta,
and Northern Idaho. They have a long standing interest in local
food security and food processing. Merv is an active board member
with the Creston Valley Sustainable Agriculture Committee and is
a past director with Kootenay Organic Growers Society. Merv has
a bachelor's degree in Sociology from the University of Calgary
and a CRA designation with the Appraisal Institute of Canada. He
is currently a licensed and active realtor with Coldwell Banker
Hey, We Aren't THAT Small After
When Food in Canada ("The Voice of the
Canadian Food Industry") published its 2005
Top 100 list of food companies (based on sales for 2004), guess
what? THREE members of the SSFPA made the list. They are:
- Anita's Organic Grain & Flour Mill Ltd.(#94);
- Food First Enterprises Ltd. (#96); and
- Misty Mountain Wild Mushroom Products (#100).
Good on ya! We know your inclusion in this list
represents an enormous amount of work WHILE maintaining your commitment
to producing and delivering quality products.
Sharing a Commercial Kitchen?
If any SSFPA member has a commercial kitchen
to share or rent, you might want to contact Alex
Beurts who is putting together a business plan for a new food
service company. He is looking for a kitchen to produce small batches
of product for market testing.
Do You Have Questions About Thermal
E-Fish-Ent Fish Company Ltd. is a family run
business established in 1990, set up to produce premium quality,
ready-to-eat seafood products. What is more, proprietors (and SSFPA
members) Bryan and Linda Mooney will be happy to answer your questions
on thermal processing, one of the most important - and complex -
methods of preserving food. Contact them via their website.
A Roll With Agriculture - The BCATA Marketing Caravan 2006
For smaller family farms to
survive, they must diversify and market their own products.
To help address the needs of today's farm producer, the British
Columbia AgriTourism Alliance (BCATA) and Canadian Farm Business
Management Council have joined forces to create an informative
This unique and innovative caravan will bring a one-day workshop-style
conference to five communities across British Columbia in February-March
2006. The focus is on developing, marketing, and selling high
quality, value-added farm products and experiences. The one-day
conferences will be held in these communities on these dates:
- Nanaimo: Monday, February 27 (Dorchester
- Creston: Thursday, March 2 (Creston and District
- Penticton: Friday, March 3 (Penticton Lakeside
- Kamloops: Saturday, March 4 (Best Western
Farm producers already active in direct farm
marketing or agritourism, and others who are exploring their options
are encouraged to attend - along with all those who support rural
economic development: local government, financial institutions,
tourism associations and agents. To find out more about the Caravan
(including presenters) and for a registration form to print out
and mail, check out the BCATA brochure.
SSFPA applauds BCATA for this initiative!
of organizations, including the Investment Agriculture Foundation
of British Columbia and the BC Agriculture Council, have come together
to commission the Focus
on the Future project that will support further development
of the agri-food industry in British Columbia. Specifically the
project is intended to:
- Assess key issues important to producers
and processors of food, beverages, nutraceutical and non-food
products of agriculture; and
- Identify strategies and actions that industry,
government and the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC Foundation
The project is divided into four phases. Outlines
of each phase
and expected outputs
can be found at the website.
Association's Success Stories for 2005
If you sometimes feel overwhelmed
by the barriers to building a safe, sustainable food supply, read
this upbeat Year
in Review provided by the Organic Consumers Association (OCA),
based in Finland, Minnesota. By outlining success stories in the
US organic scene (confronting everything from sweatshops to impediments
to free speech), OCA describes how consumers with clout can make
changes by "watchdogging" the corporate food industry
and by working toward "health, justice, and sustainability."
Looking for Olympic
Everyone involved in the Olympics
- from construction workers to athletes will be (already are!) hungry,
so opportunities in the food sector will present themselves.
Commerce Centre helps businesses of all sizes and descriptions
from across British Columbia take advantage of the 2010 Games. Its
in particular, showcases specific opportunities and provides a forum
for success stories. For example, this month you can learn how a
small web design business in Dawson Creek has already struck Olympic
Resources for Small
No matter how small your business
is, you can take advantage of professional planning and mentoring
resources. Small Business
BC - whose services are often featured here - is a complete,
one-stop source of information including seminar listings, on-line
guides, an internet
newsletter, links to other organizations, and much more.
Centre: A Great Resource for Business Planning
The program formerly known as the
Women's Enterprise Society of BC now has a new name (Women's
Enterprise Centre) and a new website.
It offers the same great services, including essential skills development
to help you succeed; empowerment lending to start or grow your business;
and personal access to business expertise, peer connections, resources,
events and more. If you are a woman starting or growing a business
in BC, this program is a well worth investigating. Whether you are
male or female, the on-line business planning guides (accessible
from the Tools
and Resources section) are invaluable in themselves. You can
call them toll-free at 1-800-643-7014.
Chef Wins Prestigious Award
Whitecap books and chef/author
Bill Jones have announced that Jones's latest book, Salmon: The
Cookbook was selected as "Best Fish and Seafood Book"
at the 2005 Gourmand and World Cookbook Awards. Based in Barcelona,
Spain, the Gourmand competition featured more than 6,000 entries
in all categories.
The author of nine cookbooks, Bill
Jones lives in the Cowichan Valley. He was also a Gourmand winner
in 2003 with Chef's Salad.
and While We're On the Subject of Chef Bill Jones ...
.... we should direct you to the
Cowichan Valley's Deerholme Farms and its exciting series of cooking
workshops, hosted by Bill and his co-chef, James Barbour. The
first is a seafood extravaganza with a Valentine's theme. Learn
how to cook the world's best crab, shellfish from Cortez and Quadra
Islands, and fish plucked from local waters, February 11, 2006.
An Excellent Guide
to Food Processing
The focus of Your Food Processing
Guide for Ontario is, of course, on Ontario products
and regulations, but there is much here that is universal. The Guide
is intended to help the food business entrepreneur start, manage
and grow a business. It takes a look at some of the important areas
specific to the food processing business, including information
on researching, manufacturing and marketing commercial-scale food
products; along with guidelines for food safety, quality assurance
and government regulations. Numerous contacts and on-line links
throughout the Guide direct the reader to additional resources.
Reports from BC Research Fisheries Technology Division
After BC Research's Fisheries
Technology Division closed down some years ago, the Technical
Reports and Industry Information Reports were entrusted to Denise
DeLeebeeck, Instructor/Coordinator at Bait's Fish Harvesting &
Processing Technology/ Food Technology Program. These are reports
produced from research projects from 1979-1989. They can be distributed
to anyone interested at no cost for single copy requests within
North America. Batch requests and requests from outside North America
will incur shipping charges. Email Denise
if you are interested. Please provide your name and full mailing
address with your request.
Development in BC: 2006 E-Newsletter
This monthly newsletter is published by the
BC/ Yukon Community Economic Development Network, a regional network
of the Canadian Community
Economic Development Network. With a circulation of over 1,200
it's a prime communications tool for those undertaking the important
task of revitalizing our communities, both urban and rural. If you'd
like to subscribe or if you have information you'd like to share,
email Ellie Parks.
Coast Capital Savings
Named Leading Corporate Citizen ... and a Great Employer, Too
One of SSFPA's supporters, Coast
Capital Savings, received a Canadian Investment Award for the
second consecutive year by Imagine Canada. The award was open to
organizations in the financial services sector; companies were judged
on their contributions to the community, responsible business practices
and overall reputation as a good corporate citizen.
In December 2005, the Globe
and Mail's "Report on Business" also reported that
Coast Capital Savings was listed among Hewitt Associates 50
Best Employers in Canada. As identified by Hewitt, leadership,
career development, and recognition were three areas where the "Best"
outdid other organizations, resulting in a significant positive
impact on employee engagement. More than 137 organizations and 100,000+
employees participated in the study.
Lloyd Craig, Coast Capital Savings' President
and CEO stated: 2005 has been an outstanding year for our
credit union and todays award is a testament to our employees
hard work and help in creating a dynamic corporate culture here
at Coast Capital.
Incredible Expanding 100 Mile Diet
The "hundred mile" diet,
the food adventures of J. B. MacKinnon and Alisa Smith, continues
to be chronicled in the on-line publication Tyee.
This month, MacKinnon and Smith inform their readers, "No,
we're not gaining weight. We're gaining allies." Follow their
progress and the insights they are gathering from eating locally-produced
Give a Listen to "Deconstructing
We at sound bits are committed
to a multimedia approach to food issues, so we're pleased when we
find broadcast material that we can recommend. A new radio series,
Dinner, put on by Kootenay Co-op Radio and hosted by Jon Steinman,
"report[s] on current issues throughout the world of food,
with a primary focus on local, regional, and provincial issues."
It seeks to "assist listeners in making more educated choices
when purchasing food either for the kitchen or at food-service establishments."
.A journalist specializing in food and beverages
(including a column on beer), Steinman focuses on independent and
family-operated producers and retailers. Even if you don't live
in the Kootenays, you can listen live
via the internet, Thursday evenings from 6 to 7 pm.
SSFPA Reports, Publications,
Co-Operators Group Successfully Defends Co-ops in Ottawa
sound bits NEWS
Links to Related Sites
You can find all the past issues of sound
bits (along with other archived material) at the
Archives section of the web site. Some
documents referred to may no longer have active links. If there
is a document or other information that isn't available, please
Join Our Newsletter Network
If you'd like a monthly e-mail
update of sound bits, contact
us and we'll put your name on our list serve. It's a quick and
easy way to find out what's happening in the "small-scale"
Small Scale Food Processor Association
"We're Big on Small"
Web site: http://www.ssfpa.net