So what’s our story?
Take a love of food made from scratch. Throw in a commitment to sustainable practices … and you get Wheatberries.
Wheatberries began with a simple idea that grew through the determination of owners Mark and Jane Yellowley.
Moving to the Sunshine Coast from Vancouver in 1994, the two knew they wanted to be involved with organic food. Handmade food. Great tasting food. The kind of food friends and neighbours were making for each other but wasn’t to be found when it came to eating out.
They drew inspiration from a favourite phrase…
“Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now. “
And so they began.
Mark and Jane dove right in, baking their tantalizing, handmade organic products out of a rented kitchen to supply local cafes and shops.
A bakery in the woods
Their goodies proved so popular, Mark and Jane soon needed their own dedicated commercial kitchen space and set about converting a bright new studio space at their new home. With their first mixes ready to go, Mark and Jane started baking and selling on the spot – literally in their own backyard!
Saturdays would see people line the Yellowley driveway in Roberts Creek, eager to buy fresh baked goods from Wheatberries – the bakery in the woods. Regulars valued the tasty treats. And Mark and Jane appreciated the chance to get to know people and build real relationships in their community.
Again, they outgrew their surroundings. When the “Vintage” bakery site at 1057 Gibsons Way in Gibsons became available, Mark and Jane made the move. They added organic, locally roasted fair trade coffee to the offerings and created a welcoming atmosphere. You can now visit the Wheatberries Bakery in Gibsons at 818 Gibsons Way, Gibsons.
Mark and Jane grew Wheatberries Bakery determined to serve their community nothing but the best. With that came the desire to also hire from the community. Providing opportunities became fundamental to their concept of business growth.
A big idea
Mentoring their team, Mark and Jane set about providing further training for their staff members.
After a holiday to Europe, Mark and Jane made a pleasant discovery. The bakery had been fine without them. Jane and Mark’s belief had panned out – empower your staff and they will take ownership of what they’re doing.
This success prompted the idea of expansion. And when the opportunity arose to open new locations in Sechelt they didn’t hesitate.
To keep up with supplying the needs of the busy stores, Mark and Jane purchased the Gibsons venue with a larger kitchen, the big Wheatberries building with west coast timber deck in Gibsons.
As business grew, so did the Yellowley family, with the additions of two beautiful children. With a large staff, two locations, and a growing desire that each bakery have the full time attention of an on-site owner, it seemed time for another change.
Jane and Mark knew that franchising would allow them to stay involved in a business that was rooted in their hearts. They could maintain their dedication to providing the public with high quality food made from scratch, but spend more time with their young children.
Jane and Mark are pleased to see the commitment to great food and customer service live on. Our new Sechelt location is opening soon – watch for details!
Next: Read about Our Values