Although the road to success has been bumpy for Shawn Scott, his dream of expanding his dried products business beyond Sudbury has come true.
With the support of national retailers like Waypoint Convenience and its Localicious program, and strong demand from Sudbury consumers to buy local amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Local Jerky Plus quickly overtook its 1,000-foot meat plant. square on the Kingsway established in March.
Now Scott is aiming for an international market and he couldn’t have done it without the support he has received from his friends, family and community.
âOur partnership with Waypoint has been an absolute success. It was cool to see our numbers beat multibillion dollar companies. I’m pretty proud of it, âhe said.
âIt’s really nice to see big franchises like Waypoint bringing these local brands and helping entrepreneurs like me get their products on store shelves. ”
Launched in the fall of 2019, just months before the pandemic hit Ontario, Scott’s Sudbury’s Local Jerky Plus products quickly became popular with area residents.
The business started out in Scott’s home, but with growing popularity licensing issues arose with the local health unit and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
Undeterred, Scott got over the paperwork, gained provincial approval to open a licensed meat processing plant, and hired a team of five employees.
âThe crazy thing is that we overtook this facility probably in the first two months of operation. Now we are looking to go federal and get a license from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. This will allow us to develop our business all over the world, âhe said.
âTo see the substantial growth of the business only in Sudbury and surrounding areas is incredible. We are ready to take this business to the next level.
One of Scott’s biggest fans is Waypoint convenience agent Bill Chimchak.
âWhen Shawn was just starting out, I was looking for a local supplier of meat snacks for our Localicious section in our stores. Local Jerky Plus was a perfect fit, and now it’s a bestseller. Waypoint customers love it, âhe said.
âBest of all, Shawn and I have become good friends ever since. His attention to food-making craftsmanship, infectious energy, optimism, and relentless community involvement are simply amazing. ”
Chimchak is the franchisee of two local Mobil stores located on Lorne Street at Chris’s Your Independent Grocer and Lasalle Boulevard at Superstore, which are part of a group of major brands owned by fuel and gasoline retailer and convenience store Greenergy .
He partners with several local businesses under the Localicious program, including brands like Nickel City Cheese, Northwest Fudge Factory, and Maple Acres Farm.
Waypoint’s Localicious program has proven to help these businesses increase sales by expanding their customer base and promoting their brands outside of their home communities.
âWithout Bill’s encouragement and the community involvement of companies like Waypoint to buy and promote local products, we wouldn’t be enjoying the success we’ve had,â Scott said.
âDespite our challenges, we were up to the task and this company is definitely here to stay. ”
In addition to his work as a local contractor, Scott also works as a volunteer firefighter and is passionate about local causes including families of children with cancer in Northern Ontario and the Society for the Protection of Animals. .
He plans to host an invitational Jerkyfest event in Sudbury next year and hopes to hire local unemployed people enrolled in the Ontario Works program as he expands his business.
âI like to get involved and give back to the community. It’s what my parents always did, and now it’s a passion for me, âhe said.
“I really want to thank my family, especially my children, who have been my number one supporter over the past year as we started this business.”
Waypoint Convenience plans to expand into the region at Mobil and Mr. Gas locations in communities such as Val Caron, Sturgeon Falls and North Bay.
Chimchak said he was always on the lookout for potential partnerships with local businesses. Anyone interested in the Localicious program – especially if they are making butter pies – can contact Chimchak directly to discuss the opportunity.
The Local Journalism Initiative is made possible through funding from the federal government.