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Local chefs celebrate their local heroes


Canada has no shortage of local heroes—passionate members of the food industry who care about high-quality food as much as they do about giving back to their communities. Across the country, Canadian egg farmers have played an active role in these efforts by supporting local causes and providing fresh, high-quality eggs for schools, food banks and more.

The past year was challenging for the food sector, and Canada’s culinary community went above and beyond to support each other. We asked four Egg Farmers of Canada chef ambassadors to nominate an exemplary individual in the food industry who has made a positive impact in their local communities. Hear from chefs Lynn Crawford, Dale MacKay, Craig Flinn and Matt Basile about the local heroes who inspired them in 2020.

Chef Lynn Crawford and egg farmer Gary West

Chef Lynn Crawford has an appreciation for the work that goes into producing fresh, nutritious food. That’s why she chose to celebrate Gary West—an Ontario egg farmer who takes pride in providing high-quality food for his community. For five years, Gary has donated eggs from his farm to local school breakfast programs. The two discuss how he is making a difference in the lives of thousands of students with Foodism and Edible Ottawa.

Chef Dale MacKay and Christopher Cho

In 2009, renowned Saskatchewan-based chef Dale MacKay hired Christopher Cho, who was at the time an aspiring cook. Twelve years later, Christopher has risen as a champion within the food community. In MENU magazine, Dale speaks with Christopher about his involvement as a board member of the Bartenders Benevolent Fund. Over the past year, the organization has provided $500,000 in relief funds for those working in the hospitality industry across Canada.

Chef Craig Flinn and Chef Renée Lavallée

Halifax chef Craig Flinn is himself committed to giving back to his community—actively participating in charity work and fundraising. He nominated Chef Renée Lavallée, another local restaurateur who has proven what the hospitality industry is all about. In MENU magazine, Renée discusses how she and her husband have been providing meals for The North Grove, a community food centre in Nova Scotia. So far, Renée and Doug have cooked up over 13,000 meals for local families and individuals in need.

Chef Matt Basile and Chef Keith Hoare

Celebrated Toronto chef Matt Basile chose to spotlight Thistletown Collegiate Institute instructor, Chef Keith Hoare. As a longtime committed community member, Keith has raised over $300,000 to help underprivileged students enter the culinary world. In Edible Toronto, Keith shares how he has worked with members of the culinary industry to secure food for local shelters and food banks, cooking over 30,000 ready-to-eat meals.

Egg farmers are proud to celebrate these industry heroes. Take a look at the #LocalChefLocalHero hashtag on social media to learn about the ways members of the food sector are giving back to their local communities.