- After another pandemic year, a B.C. non-profit says it’s more important than ever to support local businesses, farmers, and manufacturers.
- Tina Taphouse, a photographer, collaborates with Meeka Knaiger on a pop-up artisan Christmas market featuring items made in the area.
A B.C. non-profit says it’s more important than ever to support local businesses, farmers, and manufacturers after another pandemic year marred by ongoing supply chain issues, wildfires, and now devastating floods.
Small businesses with fewer than fifty employees make up 98 percent of businesses in B.C., according to LOCO BC, which uses engagement to raise awareness about the economic and community benefits of independent businesses.
Windsor Quality Meats in Vancouver’s Riley Park shopping district is seeing a surge in demand for local products this holiday season.
“Customers are more conscious of their options and ask questions like, ‘Hey, is this from a local supplier?'” said butcher Raul Granucci. “And I’m delighted to say yes.”
The majority of Windsor’s cuts come from the flood-ravaged Fraser Valley, where Granucci said the disaster had disrupted the supply of some products like poultry.
“I order a lot and only get about half of what I order,” he told Global News.
However, unlike in the early days of COVID-19, when customers hoarded food and other necessities, Granucci said that shoppers now share the limited supply of fresh chicken and only purchase what they require.
“We understand that there may be a couple of days of boom, followed by a period of bust,” Granucci said.
Following the pandemic and recent flooding, B.C.’s agriculture minister believes people are thinking more about food value, knowing that extreme events can disrupt the supply chain.
“When we consider food to be valuable, we can also consider it to be an incredible gift to give,” Lana Popham told Global News.
“If you buy something that says it’s made in British Columbia, you’re supporting that farmer who just went through or is still going through that disaster.”
Tina Taphouse, a photographer, collaborates with Meeka Knaiger on a pop-up artisan Christmas market featuring items made in the area.
“We make everything here, and it’s already here; you don’t have to wait,” Taphouse explained.
The two Native artists sell paintings, prints, jewelry, and crafts, all of which have a story to tell.
Taphouse told Global News, “It’s made with a lot of hard work and love.”
According to LOCO BC’s recent research, local products keep up to 92 cents of every dollar circulating in the local economy. According to founder and executive director Amy Robinson, the imported and local items had very similar price points.
“If it does cost more, I’d like consumers to consider the cost to the environment and local jobs,” Robinson said.
“Paying a little more for something that’s locally grown, locally made, and sold by a locally owned business helps your friends and neighbors.”
Granucci claims that it allows him to pay a good wage to his employees and support everyone else in the chain.
“I can pay the suppliers what they need to keep their business going, as well as the distributors who help us get the product from the Fraser Valley to our dinner plates in the city.”
Source: Global News
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