York Region is home to a strong and diverse agri-food sector, and is one of the largest food and beverage processing hubs in Canada. You might not have known that many of your favourite brands at the grocery store call one of our nine municipalities home.
Check out these industry leaders that are helping to grow and further establish York Region as a key hub for the food and beverage sector.
Arla Foods Canada
Originally started as a small operation in Denmark, Arla Foods is now a 12,500-strong dairy farmer cooperative and a team of 19,000 engaged colleagues who love milk and all the possibilities it presents. Headquartered in Vaughan, the company produces a wide variety of cheese products that you’ll be sure to recognize during your next grocery shopping trip, such as Tre Stelle Feta, Arla Havarti and much more.
King Cole Ducks
For over 70 years and four generations, King Cole Ducks has been solely focused on producing duck products of the highest quality using time-honoured, natural farming practices. Based in Whitchurch-Stouffville, King Cole Ducks adopted a vertically-integrated system where they handle everything from the very beginning as an egg, to a completed product served at the dinner table. The company is now one of the largest duck producers in Canada with over 160 staff.
What’s better than a freezie in the summer? And what brand is more iconic than Kisko’s Mr. Freeze? The company started as a humble operation in Kingston, Jamaica run by the Josephs family and eventually moved to their large warehouse and production facility in Vaughan. Today, Kisko Products is still a proud family run business whose focus for 40 years has always been to produce the best quality freeze pops in the market. You can also hear directly from Mark Josephs, President, Kisko Products in our York Region Agri-Food Tour video.
La Rocca Creative Cakes
You’d be hard pressed to find a major grocery chain that doesn’t carry La Rocca cakes in its bakery section. The La Rocca tradition of dessert making began 60 years ago in Naples, Italy where their family’s passion for the art of baking inspired the many original and unique recipes they have today. In 1986 La Rocca Creative Cakes was established in Vaughan, and over the last 35 years, they’ve grown to become one of the most respected artisanal dessert manufacturers in North America.
Smucker Foods of Canada
Based in Markham, Smucker Foods of Canada has been offering Canadians its fruit spreads since 1988. It has since grown to include many iconic brands such as Folgers coffee, Robin Hood flour and baking mixes, Five Roses flour, Bick’s pickles and condiments among many others.
With over 85 products (and counting), Summer Fresh has certainly proved that healthy, delicious food is a booming industry. Based in Vaughan, Summer Fresh specializes in using real, whole ingredients (and no preservatives), and only making small batches to ensure that any Summer Fresh product you enjoy is as fresh as it is tasty. Their lineup includes a variety of hummus, dips, salads and other snacks that are shipped and enjoyed across North America.