Farmer John’s Local Market & Kitchen

By: Cassi Smith

Farmer John’s Local Market & Kitchen is connecting communities with locally grown, nutritious food from the best producers in Saskatchewan. With a passion for business, agriculture, and community, owner Audra Hill says it was COVID 19 that pushed her to follow her dream. “The pandemic wasn’t an obstacle for me,” says Audra, “it was quite an opportunity actually.” When the world stopped in 2020, Audra saw food prices soar and accessibility to good food disappear, and she knew she had to help. “I wanted to fuel the fire inside of me and start this dream of mine.” Audra’s background in finance inspired her to find a lender that truly understood her vision. “When I first met with CCDF, they wanted to know more about my idea and why I had this passion. They were so supportive right away, it instantly felt like a partnership.”

As a Métis woman, Audra says working with CCDF has been empowering both culturally and as an entrepreneur. “CCDF is so amazing when it comes to encouraging Métis people to get their ideas out there and take that next step. They’ve been huge for me in that respect.” With the help of CCDF and the unexpected motivation of a global pandemic, today Farmer John’s is addressing grocery supply chain issues and giving local producers the chance to sell their product in a local market. “It’s such an adventure but such a rewarding process,” says Audra, “to be a part of it is pretty amazing!”