Scale Your Progressive Business workshop series


Scale Your Progressive Food Business

What is the Feeding Growth “Scale Your Progressive Food Business” workshop series?

This series of five workshops provides practical tips for progressive retail and packaged goods companies to reach and maintain success. Each workshop follows the Feeding Growth recipe: personable and caring food industry mentors share advice; participants engage in hands-on exercises; and the helpful community of progressive change-makers connects over tasty local food. The series culminates with a keynote event celebrating our graduates and the local food movement.

The "Scale Your Progressive Food Business" workshop series runs every Fall, from late September to late November, at a frequency of one workshop every second Thursday from 1pm-5pm.

Brand & Marketing: September 26th, UBC Farm

Jenny Dickson, UBC Sauder School of Business

Kevin Greenwood

Sonia Strobel, Skipper Otto

You have a story. Your business has a story. Now you want to celebrate that story through your packaging, marketing personality, and product positioning. As your business grows, you especially want to ensure you’re effectively conveying your brand’s values and persona to your customers. In this workshop, a panel of experts will lay out the dos and don’ts of progressive food business branding and marketing, and help you put your positioning statement to the test. This workshop will include Sonia Strobel (Skipper Otto), Kevin Greenwood, and Jenny Dickson (UBC Sauder School of Business).


Sales & Distribution: October 10th, Horizon Distributors

Corbin Bourree, SPUD

Kurstin Leith, LBN Brand Management

Gayle Thom, Horizon Distributors

Our most sought-after workshop! Why? Who to sell to, who to distribute with, how to represent your product: those are all questions that can make or break your business venture. And at times of expansion, when there seems to be so much on the line, making sense of the landscape out there can be overwhelming. Our carefully selected panel of industry experts, representing every actor of the supply chain, will give you the inside scoop you need to make good decisions. Plus, we make sure you come out with a clear understanding of your pricing structure by doing some good old math. This workshop will include Gayle Thom (Horizon Distributors), Kurstin Leith (LBN Brand Management),and Corbin Bourree (SPUD).


Sourcing & Manufacturing: October 24th, Faculty Brewing

Mauricio Lozano, Faculty Brewing

Ali Samei, Hippie Snacks

Sarah Clarke, FreeYumm Foods Ltd.

You pride yourself on procuring excellent ingredients. But are you fully aware of the impact of your procurement practices? Do they honor your business values? And are your manufacturing steps maximizing the quality of those ingredients? In this workshop, quality control and procurement experts walk you through an analysis of your own operations and sourcing – teaching you how to save time, money, and even your sanity. This workshop will include Sarah Clarke (FreeYumm Foods Ltd.), Ali Samei (Hippie Snacks), and Mauricio Lozano (Faculty Brewing).



Financing Growth: November 7th, Vancity Head Office

Nicole Bradbury, Renewal Funds

Brian Cade, Vancity

Rory Holland, Knives & Forks Community Investment Coop

Oh that pitch for money! Are you dreading it? Yet, you know that it’s key to your business success to get comfortable and creative with the asks. This workshop will not only help you nail that investor pitch, but it will also explain the diversity of support options that exist: loans, angel investing, equity partners, crowdfunding, etc. And most importantly, our panel of experts will help you determine which option is best for your business values at each stage of growth. This workshop will include Rory Holland (Knives & Forks Community Investment Coop), Brian Cade (Vancity), and Nicole Bradbury (Renewal Funds),


Sustainability & Inspiration: November 21st, Lost & Found Café

Triple bottom line sustainability for your food business: a myth or a reality? Answer that question alongside our entire Feeding Growth community. Celebrate local, progressive food entrepreneurs and champions with good food and a special keynote invitee! *This workshop takes place from 6:30 p.m. -10 p.m.


Full workshop series - $299.00. Vancity business members - $199.00. Individual workshop - $89.

* Want to involve one of your staff or co-founder? Access a 30% discount on the purchase of a second ticket for the full workshop series or individual workshops by sending listing attendees from your business. Discount only applies to full $299 full workshop series and $89 individual workshop tickets.

        • You are a Canadian entrepreneur in the food transformation or food processing sphere (i.e., retail and packaged goods).
        • Your enterprise is progressive, i.e., with a mixture of local, organic, and/or natural products, and sustainable, ethical business practices. You care about the social and environmental impacts of your business.
        • You are ready to take your business to the next level, but you do not know exactly how to scale up.
        • You want to refine your business’ branding, marketing, manufacturing, distribution, and financing approaches.
        • You love practical tips – you want workshops where you leave with practical tips and proven strategies you can start to implement right away.
        • You value hearing a diversity of perspectives from successful progressive food business veterans.
        • You would like to collaborate with Vancouver’s growing progressive food community and connect with others like you who may have experienced similar opportunities and challenges and from whom you could get advice.
        • Are you an entrepreneur but not sure if your product is food system related? Feeding Growth might still be the right fit for you! Business owners with products such as pet food, natural cleaning, and farmers looking at value-added products would all benefit from the Feeding Growth workshops and community. Contact with your questions.

Completing the whole Feeding Growth Scale your Progressive Food Business workshop series makes you a Feeding Growth Alumni, which gives you:

        • Free attendance to the Feeding Growth Coffee Series: a series of dialogues about food business subjects, in collaboration with engaged food industry partners, and with the Feeding Growth recipe: personable and caring food industry mentors; inspiring yet mighty practical insight; and a helpful community of progressive change-makers.
        • Access to Feeding Growth’s 280+ members Community Listserv where food industry experts and peers share valuable information and find solutions to food business challenges.
        • First dibs on UBC Farm Farmers' Markets: the Vancouver market scene is a difficult one to access. The UBC Farm Farmer’s Market is eager to support emerging, progressive food businesses.
        • Access to additional HR support: You get to work with the UBC Food Systems Internship team to welcome valuable intern(s) to enhance your business growth.
        • Open doors to yearly Scale your Progressive Food Business workshops: come back to connect, refresh your memory, get access to food industry veterans, and more. Want to send one of your employees? Your employee can access a 30% discount on the full series or individual workshops.

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