It’s in our bones – Invest Medicine Hat

It’s in our bones

Agriculture / News

With a growing desire for healthy eating and nose-to-tail dietary habits, bone broth is a brewing industry that a Medicine Hat team could really capitalize on.

When Perry Deering of Deerview Meats was introduced to bone broth, he immediately saw a potential market for his beef bones, which he currently pays to dispose of.

“Right now we sell a percentage of our premium marrow bones to customers as pet treats, meaning that people know the great nutritional value of bone marrow,” explains Deering. “I see this leading to a future opportunity for an expanding market, as consumers realize the large health benefits in bringing back into our diet a natural food product, not to mention a new exciting market for Medicine Hat.”

Even though beef bones currently have limited value, that doesn’t mean there’s not potential. Bone broth has been a central part of many diets for millennia. Recent studies have suggested broth can reduce inflammation and promote healing in addition to a host of other health benefits.

Thanks to those studies and a clever bit of product rebranding, bone broth has seen a resurgence among the popular CrossFit and Paleo Diet movements. As it spills beyond those niche groups and into the general public, as it already has begun to do in Manhattan and San Francisco, big players have taken notice.

Whole Foods Market, which has built a reputation as a high-end grocer with over 430 locations worldwide, has ordered more than some producers can deliver. In Canada, Kelowna-based Boned Broth is expanding to keep up with demand as they expand from two dozen Western Canadian grocers to nation-wide this year. All of this activity for a premium product that sells for about $10 per 500ml in Canada.

For Medicine Hat entrepreneurs, the opportunity exists to access markets in Alberta and across Western Canada. Badlands CrossFit owner Tom Wilde sees a small regional market thanks to gyms like his as well as farmer’s markets in Medicine Hat, Lethbridge and Calgary.

“Medicine Hat is an excellent place to start a food processing business,” explains Invest Medicine Hat General Manager Ryan Jackson. “There is a strong agricultural base thanks to the surrounding cattle industry. We also have Western Canadian market access and an investor pool looking for innovative business ideas.”

While some broth producers struggle to find enough bones, it would be easy for a Medicine Hat-based broth producer to source high-quality, nutritious bones like those from Deerview Meats and other area processors. Medicine Hat is home to a burgeoning food scene and provides easy access to markets across Western Canada.

All the ingredients are here for a successful bone broth company. All it takes is one brave entrepreneur to take advantage.