Health food founder pulls double duty to help communityAlberta · Jul 21, 2020
Whitney Turcato of Borderland Food Company in Calgary
Navigating the pandemic has been a deeply personal experience for Whitney Turcato, a registered nurse and founder of Borderland Food Company. She’s seen first-hand how important it is to support each other – and local businesses – during tough times. She’s hopeful this moment will trigger long-term improvements to the Canadian economy.
“I feel the smaller companies have always put an emphasis on supporting each other and supporting local. I think that's going to increase because it's not only the good thing to do, it's also a smart business practice.” - Whitney Turcato, owner of Borderland Food Company.
Looking out for her community’s health is nothing new for Whitney Turcato. Born and raised in Alberta, she worked as a registered nurse in addiction and mental health for over a decade before founding Borderland. Her company produces high quality bone broth with a focus on local suppliers, and employs people recovering from addiction whenever possible.
“I’m very passionate about assisting people in improving their health,” Whitney told us. “And at my very core, I’m an entrepreneur. So when I found bone broth and recognized all the great health benefits that come with it, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to mesh those two parts of who I am.”
A few years later, Borderland Food Company’s products are found in hundreds of stores across Canada, and they’ve recently expanded into bone broth for pets. But COVID-19 significantly disrupted their distribution strategies, and now Whitney is ready to double-down on her local approach.
“I think everyone is really examining their ways of doing business and especially their supply chain,” she says. “Hopefully we'll see a lot more trade happening within Canada.”
Whitney has plenty of faith in Alberta’s ability to bounce back from trying times. She was a frontline nurse during the Fort McMurray wildfire, the 2013 Calgary flood, and now as a frontline worker during the COVID-19 pandemic. “What I've seen in the past is just the level of resilience that we have when these things impact us as a community…how it really draws us together and makes us stronger.”
Between her two jobs, there have been plenty of long days and nights. But she’s inspired by all the kind acts she’s witnessed, and is optimistic that this crisis will trigger some positive improvements.
“I think people will be more mindful of the things they perhaps took for granted before,” she says. “Maybe we’ll express a bit more gratitude for those general freedoms on a daily basis.”
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