Vendor Spotlight: Sola Skin Care


SPOTLIGHT FEATURE SALE: This Sunday at the Poirier Street Farmers Market Sola Skin Care! Stop by their tent on Sunday and ask for the SPOTLIGHT DEAL: $2 off our best selling 70g size Coconut Deodorant (regular price is $13, spotlight deal $11)

Q. First – welcome to the Coquitlam Farmers Market! This Sunday will mark your first day – are you excited? 

Thank you! We are *so* excited to have a booth at the Coquitlam Farmer’s Market. We attend almost weekly with our girls to make sure we are stocking up on our favourites, and now that we’re a part of the market family? Totally fun 🙂

Q. Sola Skincare, where does the name root from? 

Our business is a family business. It’s a mix of my and my husband Eran’s strengths. He’s a Dr. of Chinese Medicine, and a big part of his practice is Chinese herbal medicine. My forte in this biz is the research and development of the products. Once I come up with a product idea, he decides what Chinese herbs would best compliment the product, and we go from there. Since we’re already involved, we wanted to incorporate our girls in the name of the company, so Sola is simply a combination of their names, Sophie and Lila. Once they’re older we hope to put them to work so they can pull their own weight 🙂

Q. What does into the process of making one item?

Making the products is broken down into many steps. Because we make everything in small batches and by hand, it can be quite labour intensive. I’ll give the example of our Coconut Deodorant. It involves melting and incorporating the ingredients, setting out the containers, carefully weighing and pouring them all by hand, letting them set, then putting the lids on them, recording the batch number on each label (by hand) and finally hand labeling them. It’s definitely a process of many small steps!

Q. What are your best selling products? 

Our best selling product by far is our Coconut Deodorant. People are always on the look-out for a natural deodorant that actually works and keeps the stink out. It’s been so wonderful to hear feedback from so many people who say they are thrilled to finally have found a natural deodorant that works, all day, in the heat, through exercise, for men and women, etc.  Our Balancing Face Oil is also a real favourite with many. It’s an oil based moisturizer that you can mix with a bit of water or hydrosol and use as your face ‘cream’. All of the oils in the blend are high quality, plant based, almost all organic, and non-comedogenic (which means they don’t clog your pores). The Balancing Face Oil absorbs really quickly, and does not leave you feeling greasy at all.

Q. Why do you think farmers markets are important in the community? 

We think farmers markets are important because they bring people together. We spend the majority of our time at home, school or work. Going out to the farmers market allows you to really meet and connect with people in your community, whether it’s fellow vendors, meeting your neighbours, or bumping into other friends from your community. We always see people we know at the market, and have come to really know the vendors as well (since we’re always there!). We really love the community aspect of farmers market, and think it’s so important.


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Vendor Spotlight: Whipped Baked Goods and Confectionary


SPOTLIGHT FEATURE SALE: This Sunday at the Poirier Street Farmers Market Whipped Baked Goods and Confectionary will be offering a special deal! Stop by their tent on Sunday and ask for the SPOTLIGHT DEAL: Buy two bags of Marshmallows and get a Marshmallow Sampler FREE

Q. You are a new face at the Poirier Street Farmers Market – How did Whipped Baked Goods and Confectionary start?

I have had a dream of owning an Afternoon Tea Café/Pastry Shop ever since I was a little girl. I actually ended up in the Human Resources Profession, all the while having this dream in the back of my mind.  Just recently, my father passed away while I was on maternity leave. It was then and there I decided that life was too short not to follow your dream.  My dad used to say that “When you do what you love, you’ll never work another day in your life!”. We don’t have a location as of yet, but we are working on it with all of our might so please stay tuned!

Q. What is your best selling product?

We have a few best sellers so it’s hard to name one. I would say that it is a tie between our S’MORES BAR, and TOASTED COCONUT, MINT CHOCOLATE and RASPBERRY LEMONADE marshmallows.

Q. What is your favourite item to make?

I love working on customized and specialty orders such as sweet tables for weddings and parties. I also enjoy coming up with off the wall and wacky flavours or fun spin offs of nostalgic favourites.

Q. What makes your marshmallows different than the ones we see in stores? 

The difference is that our marshmallows are made with honey and natural flavouring, such as real fruit, pure extracts, tea, coffee and beer/liqueur.

Q. Why do you think farmers markets are important in the community?

Farmers markets are more than just places to buy food and artisan items.  What makes the farmers market such a special place is that you’re actually creating community around food. Guests of the market purchase their food directly from the producers, and they build relationships with the people who provide them with their food. That is my favourite part!


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Vendor Spotlight: Gary’s Kettle Corn


SPOTLIGHT FEATURE SALE: This Sunday at the Poirier Street Farmers Market Gary’s Kettle Corn will be offering a special deal! Stop by their tent on Sunday and ask for the SPOTLIGHT DEAL: Buy one Large Bag of Kettle Corn and get one Small Bag FREE!

Q. This is your second year taking over the Coquitlam Farmers Market for your father, how do you like it?

We love it!  We really enjoy the company of the vendors and customers at this market. It’s an amazing atmosphere!   We live just down the street so it’s great that we have this chance to meet the people and vendors in our community. We’re very proud to be a part of the Coquitlam market.

Q. How many years has your family been making kettle corn?

My Father started out 12 years ago and a few years after my brother joined in.  Since 2009, I would stop by once a week at the market to help out my father at the front. It wasn’t until late September 2013 when I was truly introduced to popping my first batch of kettle corn. I remember being a bit nervous and thinking I would burn it all. To my surprise it turned out perfect! Must have had a great teacher! When my father Gary decided to move to Vernon, B.C it gave my wife and I the chance to experience the markets first hand. I was truly surprised how much we loved the markets. Ever since then, we’ve never looked back.

Q. What is the secret behind getting that perfect pop?

Spot on timing, just the right amount of ingredients, perfect temperature and of course the rest is TOP SECRET!

Q. What’s next for Gary’s Kettle Corn?

We would like to spend more time getting involved in our community and help spread the word of our local farmer markets.  We’ve also talked about adding new flavors. We just recently added Caramel Corn. We’re working hard trying to bring the kettle corn taste you can’t resist to everyone throughout the lower mainland!

Q. Why do you think farmers markets are important in the community?

Farmer markets are the perfect places to connect with others within their communities while supporting their local businesses. It’s also an experience that promotes a sense of place within the community and sets the perfect social atmosphere while families shop and meet their local business owners. We know many of our regular customers by their first names and it’s always a pleasure to see them drop by even if it’s just to say “Hello!”


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Vendor Spotlight: Mediterra Soaps


SPOTLIGHT FEATURE SALE: This Sunday at the Poirier Street Farmers Market Mediterra Soaps will be offering a special deal! Stop by their tent on Sunday and ask for the SPOTLIGHT DEAL: 20 % off Organic Aloe Vera Gel and Body lotions. (This offer now expired)

Q. Why did you start making soap?

My Grandfather, Youlious Tallia, taught me the secrets of soap making when I was a young girl. The first soap I learned to make 15 years ago was my pure Olive oil soap, also known as the famous Mediterranean Castille soap. Once I mastered it I then started to experiment with clay colours, essential oils, fragrance oil, and different styles. I love making my soaps unique and almost eatable, partly because it satisfies my inability to bake.

Q. What is your most popular product?

My most popular product would have to be my Detox Clay soap bar. It is excellent for acne, eczema, and other skin problems. It has olive oil, Bentonite clay and activated charcoal. That combination makes it super effective on any troubled skin, yet keeps the bar mild enough that you can use it on your face along with the body.

Q. Do you have a personal favourite?

My personal favourite is my Cranberry crush soap made with red clay and cranberry fibers, followed by my Organic Aloe Vera gel. The Aloe gel is a miracle worker; it heals, repairs and soothes the skin; great for your face and body.

Q. What is next for Mediterra Soaps?

I would love to one day have my very own store front; the possibilities are endless. Being part of the farmers Market world is something I would not give up. I love the environment, positive energy, and the local support by all who play part in making it happen week after week, year after year.

Q. Why do you think farmers markets are important in the community?

Farmers markets are so important for communities. They allow a chance for many to showcase and sell their goods. They bring communities together and make us aware of all the local goodness we have access to. The traditional way of shopping many years ago is brought back along with the culture and love.


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Get to Know: Aldergrove Jam & Preserves

aldergrove jams

Apple Pie, Carrot Cake, (apples, carrots, and pineapples), Pineapple Coconut Line, Salted Carmel Apple, Simply Strawberry, Beet Happy are just some of the enticing jam flavours created by Colleen Hooper of Aldergrove Jam, which is celebrating its first year anniversary in July.

This is a new project for Colleen, daughter-in-law Belinda and husband Dave. It all started when Belinda bemoaned the difficulties of finding jams that weren’t full of sugar. Mother-in-law Colleen pulled out all the jam-making paraphernalia, including her mother’s recipes, she had stored away when she had stopped making jam years ago and introduced the next generation to her homemade low (or no) sugar jams.  As with so many of our Farmer’s Market vendors, a friend of Belinda’s tasted the jam and asked to buy some….and the word got around

Aldergrove Jams are made with seasonal ingredients so the choices on offer vary from one season to the next. At the moment, there are 9, including those mentioned above plus 2 savoury options: Dave’s Onion Chutney and Simply Ginger.   Colleen started out following her mother’s recipes, but she soon started ‘fooling around’ with different combinations of ingredients, “because that’s what I do”. Husband Dave loves beets and so she ‘played around’ until she came up with Beet Happy.

Aldergrove Jams are low-sugar,non-GMO, preservative-free, vegan and gluten-free. Colleen sources the ingredients locally as much as possible, including from some of the other Coquitlam-Port Moody Market vendors.

Her jams taste great on toast but are also wonderful with yogurt, on oatmeal, with scones – try Beet Happy with cheese scones or Apple Pie Jam on crackers with cheddar cheese or some of Dave’s Onion Chutney with your next BBQ.

Aldergrove Jam will be at the Market on Sunday 21st and then again in August.

Article by: Anne Ladouceur