Kamloops deli processing plant avoids supply issues by sourcing meat locally

Brody White is co-owner of Chop N Block and a deli processing plant in Kamloops.

Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Chop N Block

A deli processing plant that started production in Kamloops last fall is performing well despite recent unforeseen challenges in the food industry.

Supply routes on the highways between the interior and the Lower Mainland were severely compromised by extreme flooding and a landslide on November 15. Co-owner Brody White said having mostly locally sourced produce has allowed his business to weather supply chain issues and continue to grow.

“We’re localized in terms of meat supply, so we haven’t seen much of a problem there,” White said. “It’s commodity-based pricing, so we’ve seen price increases. Our only problem is the chicken because we get it from the Fraser Valley. Luckily our supplier didn’t lose too many chickens, although we had to source from an Okanagan supplier.

READ MORE: ON VIDEO: Floods and mudslides separate British Columbia’s interior from the Lower Mainland

White said he had problems getting packaging and paper products from overseas on containers.

“It’s still a wild card and we’re seeing delays there,” he said. “A piece of equipment has just left Germany but the ports are all safeguarded.”

The processing facility is an extension of the Chop N Block butcher and delicatessen and is owned by Brody and Heather White.

A charcuterie plate made by the Chop N Block, Kamloops.

A charcuterie plate made by the Chop N Block, Kamloops.

Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Chop N Block

The 2,900 square foot plant is tucked away in Southgate Industrial Park in Kamloops and features brand new stainless steel equipment, including some from Germany, to help them produce fine-textured meats and smoked products. and dried for sale through the store and other outlets in the area.

“We had a really crazy ending last year learning to be in two places at once,” he said. “We had to manage two different inventories and go through the Christmas rush.”

White said the pair held a pop-up market in Vancouver over the holiday season and got stuck.

“We went to settle in November and then the floods happened and we were stuck there for days,” he said. “The detour home lasted seven hours. And the road conditions were dangerous and intense.

White said having the processing facility ensures that the Chop N Block storefront is always stocked.

READ MORE: A deli processing plant goes up in smoke in Kamloops

The company is currently expanding its offerings in the Okanagan. This year, they will add another full-time worker to the production team and bring more product to local restaurants.

In the fall, they will process sausages for local hunters.

“We will do custom sausages,” he said. “There is some excitement around it. We have increased our quality with better equipment and improved our way of dealing.

When asked which products were customer favourites, White said two outsold the others.

“The 18-inch dry pepperoni sticks,” he said. “We produce them every day. The Landjaeger sausage is the one that has picked up speed. »

The main meats processed at the plant are beef, pork, bison and a variety of poultry types. The bison originated in Alberta due to a lack of local bison producers.

While many companies in the food industry have to navigate volatile meat markets and supply channel limitations, White said he was able to maintain a stable supply.

“We keep our supply all the time because we use local beef and pork from smaller facilities,” he said. “All of our beef comes from a ranch in Knouff Lake. Our pork comes from Salmon Arm.

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