For more than 30 years, community grocer Choices Markets has earned a name as one of Western Canada’s largest retailers of organic, local and specialty foods, so it was only a matter of time before the B.C. owned and operated company’s expansion would look across the Georgia Straight to open its first location on beautiful Vancouver Island.
In 1990, Choices Markets opened its flagship store in Kitsilano, aiming to provide the community with support for healthy living. The company became an industry leader, focusing on alternative food options such as local, organic goods and hard-to-find items necessary for specialized diets. Going beyond food, Choices Markets’ ownership also saw the importance of considering the community’s needs as a whole. This led to establishing a complimentary nutrition program and many community outreach initiatives that have grown steadily as the company expands. In 2017, Choices Markets joined The Jim Pattison Group of companies and reiterated its commitment to being a grocer of local, organic and specialty items.
“Parksville is a vibrant community of both young and established families, and we’re excited to be growing right alongside them,” stated Jon Janower, Choices Markets COO. “This location will be our first foray onto the Island, and we’re excited to be serving the greater community from Coombs to Qualicum to Comox. As a B.C. owned and operated grocer that specializes in alternative foods, we are thrilled to be able to become a part of the lives of British Columbians in the Comox Valley.”
Set to open in fall of 2022, the newest Choices Markets will be located at 319 Island Highway East. It will be a 22,000-square-foot operation and will continue to live up to the company brand by supporting small local producers; sourcing the highest quality, ethically raised or sourced meat, poultry and seafood; providing a large variety of local, organic produce, dairy and grocery options; offering complimentary trusted nutrition services; serving as a one-stop shop for foods for specialized diets; and stocking thousands of natural wellness products.
Choices Markets was founded in 1990 by brothers Wayne and Lloyd Lockhart, who later partnered with Salim Ahmed in 2000. The Choices Markets chain has 10 locations spanning Vancouver, Burnaby, South Surrey, Abbotsford and Kelowna and also includes an industrial kitchen and bakery in South Burnaby. The Parksville location will be the company’s 11th store.
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