Goodly Foods is Officially Launched
After nearly two years of planning and preparing, all of us at Goodly Foods were ready to host our official launch on March 7, 2019. It was exciting to finally be able to properly thank and acknowledge all of the incredible individuals, organizations and businesses who have sponsored and supported us along the way…it really has taken a village!
From those who were there during the pilot phase to everyone that followed as we moved into production and finally distribution…we are so thankful and could not have come this far without their assistance, knowledge, skills and generousity. The Greater Vancouver Food Bank is especially grateful to Walmart Foundation for their $1.1M investment grant that allowed the initiative to grow. For a complete list of everyone Click Here and to check out our launch video (beautifully put together by Upperstory Films) that tells our story and thanks everyone Click Here.
Goodly Foods started out as an idea that brought together the Greater Vancouver Food Bank (GVFB) and Fulmer Capital Partners Inc. The goal was to develop a viable social enterprise repurposing surplus produce from local suppliers while creating supportive community employment opportunities.
From concept to now full-fledged reality, Goodly Foods is really cooking with potential! Since moving into our production space at Commissary Connect’s newest facility in January of 2019, we have proudly produced and distributed over 10,000 litres of our first product, a Hearty Tomato Vegetable Soup. Most of the soup made so far has been donated to members of the Greater Vancouver Food Bank (GVFB), but we are also happy to announce we have begun to sell locally and our soup can now be found in select cafeterias on site at the University of British Columbia.
We are very proud of what we have been able to accomplish so far and wanted to bring everyone together to help us celebrate. From our kitchen crew from H.A.V.E. Culinary Training Society who work hard every day making our soup to our feisty driver Val from the Greater Vancouver Food Bank to each and every one of our suppliers as well as our partners and our funders…they were all invited.
We were able to transform a section of the Commissary’s facility into a proper reception with the help from our Goodly Foods team and our wonderful volunteer Catherine Bergart as well as from Pederson’s Rentals and SW Event Technology, who both graciously gave us discounts that allowed us to stay on budget while making our space sparkle. And, then there was the delicious and abundant food catered by the talented chefs at H.A.V.E. Culinary Training Society. Then throw in some fun products by other local producers like Craft Grain and Cultured Kefir and you have a party.
The turnout was impressive despite some strange weather warnings across Metro Vancouver. Once gathered and properly nourished, Alexa Pitoulis, Goodly Food’s GM and the MC for the evening, began the festivities by showing our video and then introducing all of our featured speakers.
Kareem Shalaby, Walmart Canada’s VP Market Leader, was the first to speak acknowledging the Walmart Foundation’s generous investment grant that allowed us to move from the pilot phase to full production. Their commitment to supporting local businesses to tackle food waste head on in both Canada and the US is unprecedented and very much appreciated.
Following Mr. Shalaby was David Long, the new CEO from the Greater Vancouver Food Bank. Having been involved since inception, the GVFB continues to be an incredible partner in this process. Next on the agenda was Yuri Fulmer, the Chairman from Fulmer Capital Partners Inc. Also involved from the beginning, Yuri and his team remain actively involved guiding and supporting Goodly Foods next phase. Last but not least was Sarb Mund from Commissary Connect who is actively helping small local food producers have a quality shared kitchen facility to produce their products by being the first BC Regional Food Hub.
Guests were then treated to a tour of the facility by our Production Manager, Ian Bell and Sarb Mund where they were then able to sample our soup on site. At the end of the evening everyone was able to take soup home.
Photo Credits: Caroline Manuel, Tony King, Karen Barnaby, Jo-Anne Lauzer