GUELPH, ONTARIO, CANADA TEL: 1-800-205-3576
ALL NATURAL - ALL CANADIAN SINCE - 1983
The Early Years - Company Formation
Roothams Gourmet Preserves started in a farm summer kitchen in Fergus, Ontario, Canada in the early 1980's. Marilyn had just returned from Newfoundland where she worked as a dietitian in a hospital. Her dietary training and experience gave her great experience in food sanitation and nutrition. Being that she was 6 months pregnant with her first child, Marilyn had difficulty finding a full time job. The Ontario Ministry of Health did hire her part time.
With spare time she planted a large acre garden which flurished. With all the excess produce harvested she started canning. Marilyn custom developed recipes and tried various combinations to develop original products. That year many variations of similiar items were produced. Marilyn had numerous canned products in boxes stacked in the kitchen and anywhere a spare place existed to stack jars.
Burke's sister came to visit from Northern Ontario. She immediately asked Marilyn what she was going to do with all the jars. Marilyn had no idea as the volume was more than there family could consume. Burke's sister offered to sell the products from her store. Immediately labels were hand written or calligraphy was used to identify the products. A number of other stores were contacted by Burke's sister and also offered to sell the product. All jars were sold.
That winter stores that sold her product were called and asked for a verbal commitment on selling the custom jars the following year. Numerous verbal commitments were received. That summer Marilyn standardized recipes and some produce was purchased as well as home grown. Emphasis was on a high quality, nutritious, preservative free, unique product.