“I’m co-owner of Fresh is Best Salsa Company Inc. with my partner Colin. We manufacture chips and dips.

We started as a home-based business in 1999 and now have a retail storefront where we manufacture all our products for distribution around the province of BC and Alberta.

Salsa is the number one condiment in North America, so there’s lots of people selling it and lots of people buying it. The niche that we’ve found is that we’re one of a kind in the way that we’re really committed to just fresh chopped, uncooked ingredients, and that we have no preservatives.

When we started the business, we found out very quickly that there were a lot of different bylaws and rules that regulated food production, so we ended up hooking up with some friends that have a local restaurant and got in there late at night and cooked from midnight till six in the morning two days a week and that’s sort of where it started out.

The origins of salsa can be traced back to 600 years to the ancient Aztecs, Mayans and Incas.

It was very home-based at that point. We were doing all the labels on our computer and sticking them on the product and a lot of the bagging and that kind of stuff came out of the house.

We started originally with just salsa. And then we have a guacamole, a layer dip, a spinach dip, and a bean dip, as well as our taco shells and tortilla chips.

Habanero peppers rate the highest on the official Chile Pepper Heat Scale.

Our production process remains a lot of manual labour, because the equipment and machinery is very expensive, and the quality that comes out of machines isn’t the same quality that comes out of people, especially when it comes to our tortilla chips, the breakage and the handling and the cooking.”