Canada's business magazine for traditional natural health retailers

A busy autumn in store for industry association

by Helen Sherrard

Like many of you, we were happy to enjoy the great weather in Ontario this summer. While things seemed as busy as usual over the summer, I hope you were able to enjoy some time off wherever in Canada you are.

As I write this, it’s difficult to say how things will look on the regulatory front by the time you read it. CHFA continues to work to bring about change that will ensure that our innovative and successful industry continues to thrive and our members continue to do what they love to do.

Here are just a few of the exciting initiatives lined up for the rest of 2011:

CHFA Expo East

Expo East is the industry trade show not to be missed and takes place this year on Saturday, October 15 and Sunday, October 16 with a two day conference program on Thursday, October 13 and Friday, October 14. Please be sure to join us at our Welcome Reception on Friday evening at Expo East so we can say hello.

Regulatory affairs

CHFA continues to advocate for changes that will enhance our members’ ability to provide Canadians with access and choice to safe, high quality and effective natural health and organic products. Make a note to attend our popular Regulatory Forum on Thursday morning at Expo East when NHPD and other key Health Canada staff will be on hand. In November, CHFA returns to Ottawa for NHP Awareness Day as we continue in our efforts to educate members of parliament and advocate on behalf of our members.

Organic Week

CHFA will once again be a national champion supporter of this event and is working with the Canada Organic Trade Association to officially kick off the week at Expo East. Planning is underway to participate in some of the week’s main events including the Globe & Mail Special Report, as well as the Parliament Day Conference and Reception in Ottawa.

National Health Food Month

November is, of course National Health Food Month, an annual initiative organized by CHFA that shines a spotlight on the demonstrated benefits of natural health and organic products. This is a great opportunity for dedicated manufacturers, retailers, wholesalers, distributors, growers and importers of natural and organic products to showcase their high-quality products.


CHFA is committed to keeping members informed and up to date on all the latest news. We provide a wide range of communications that keep you updated and informed. With the recent hire of Michelle Book, our new director of communications, CHFA will continue to strengthen and develop our member and consumer communications. Stay tuned for some exciting developments in our consumer campaign early this fall.

Membership that matters

Along with all the above initiatives, as part of your CHFA membership, you have the opportunity to receive a free listing in the Natural Health Products Canada Industry Guide, an essential networking and sourcing guide for NHP retailers, manufacturers, distributors and importers. We also offer the Certified Natural Products Advisor (CNPA) course, a one year distance-learning program which will ensure retail staff and supplier sales reps are properly trained in core skills. Contact us today for more information.

There’s more work ahead as we move into autumn and we’re looking forward to keeping things moving. We’ve also got a few special projects in the works internally that will help us serve you better in the future.

There really has never been a better time to be a member of CHFA - we invite you to join the conversation by friending us on Facebook, following us on Twitter or visiting our website at If you’re interested in becoming a member, call us today at 800/661-4510 or drop by our booth at Expo East. If you’re already a member of CHFA, we’d love to say hello, so be sure to stop by and see us during the show. •

Helen Sherrard is the President of the Canadian Health Food Association and can be reached at

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Ontario Natural Food Co-op 35th Anniversary

Retailers and ONFC share many traits and values

This fall, Ontario Natural Food Co-op (ONFC) is celebrating 35 years of bringing Ontarians and Eastern Canadians the best in natural and organic foods.

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Eden juices capture two awards

Eden’s Organic Concord Grape Juice and Organic Montmorency Tart Cherry Juice have each received a Sofi Award from the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade (NASFT) in the category of ‘Outstanding Cold Beverage.’ The Sofi Awards are the highest, most coveted honour in the specialty food and beverage industry. “The competition was intense, with a record 1,657 entries across 31 award categories. A panel of nine judges, specialty food experts, spent three busy days tasting and evaluating all entries,” NASFT reported.

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Carlson Laboratories supports Natural Products Foundation

Carlson Laboratories has announced a new partnership with the Natural Products Foundation to support research and education. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of each specially labelled Carlson Super Omega-3 Gems supplement will benefit Foundation programs. The promotion began in June and will continue for a limited time, while quantities last.

The mission of the Natural Products Foundation is to promote and facilitate research and education related to natural products for the benefit of consumers and industry. Since Carlson also highly values the education of its consumers, the partnership was a natural decision. “We are so excited to be able to work with the Natural Products Foundation,” said Carilyn Anderson, president of Carlson Laboratories. “We have many common goals, including the wellness and education of our customers, so this was the perfect choice for us at this time.”

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CLM adds Mont Echo Naturels

Mont Echo Naturels 100 per cent Canadian grown sea buckthorn skincare line has been added to CLM’s product mix. Mont Echo produces an exclusive line of 100 per cent natural, hand-crafted sea buckthorn skincare products featuring 100 per cent Canadian sea buckthorn oils and floral waters. Mont Echo sea buckthorn is grown in accordance with organic standards.

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Genuine Health combines probiotic with Omega 3

Genuine Health combines stable probiotic with Omega 3 fish oil in newest product

Genuine Health has a patent pending (U.S. Application No. 61/426,605) for a high performance, stable probiotic combined with high quality omega-3 fish oil.

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Oilseed Works named “hometown hero”

Earth Day Canada (EDC) recently named Oilseed Works Inc. of Dalston, ON. as the winner of its 2011 Earth Day Canada Hometown Hero award. The awards recognize companies for outstanding commitment to the environment. This is the first year EDC is recognizing a small business Hometown Hero.

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Conference brings retailers from 15 Good Health Mart Stores

It worked the first time. So, why would it not work again? 

The “it” is the Good Health Mart Annual Supplier Conference. And the first time was in 2010.

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Kitchener store wins in Carlson contest

Basic Bulk in Kitchener, ON, was one of the winners in the Carlson Laboratories 2011 Heart Month End-Cap Contest. Basic Bulk was a second-place finisher, earning itself $250 in Carlson products. It was the only Canadian store to win, as all other winners were in the U.S.

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Retailer wins iPad from SISU

 As part of its 2010-2011 Cold & Flu campaign, SISU held both a consumer and a retailer contest. Retailers could enter a few different ways, including submitting a testimonial online or by participating with an in-store Cold & Flu product display. SISU received many wonderful testimonials and pictures of some fantastic displays.

In a random draw, Donna Hagel of Herbs n’ Health in Saskatoon was selected as the winner of an Apple iPad. In a release, the company called Donna “a great supporter of SISU who works hard to educate her customers on the many virtues of Ester-C.”

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November/December 2011

In the next issue of CNHR…

CHFA Expo East Review

Awards follow-up, new products and events at the show.

Special Feature - Food

Store Features:   

Foodsmiths, Perth, Ontario celebrates its 35th year as a leader in natural health retailing

San Tai's in Virden, Manitoba is a unique, thriving health food store in a rural corner of the province

Karma Marketplace, Penetang, ON, is at the centre of many community initiatives, including a community garden


News & Editorial:  Sept. 25
Ad space:  Sept 28
Ad Material:  October 7






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CHFA West Review

CHFA Expo West People of Excellence Awards 2011

Natural_Factors_Supplier_of_ExcellenceNatural Factors Nutritional Products Ltd. was a double winner: receiving the CHFA Supplier of Excellence Award and the CHFA Spotlight Award in the category of Innovation – Supplier




Vita_Health_Fresh_MarketsWinnipeg’s Vita Health Fresh Markets won the Brock Elliott Retailer of Excellence Award. From left, store managers Ryan Labonté and Rose Castro, vice-president Mathew Holtmann, president John Holtmann, general manager Brenda Comte, marketing manager Kendra Delichte, purchasing coordinator Ashley Chornopyski and marketing and communications coordinator Chandra Rempel



Ryan Litovitch of Vita Health Fresh Market was the winner of the Gordon Storie Memorial Bursary

Nicole Oakes of TallGrass was presented with the Jack Gahler Memorial Award For Excellence in Field Sales

Tammy Gomes of Prairie Naturals won the Jack Gahler Memorial Award For Excellence in Inside Sales

Deane Parkes presented Suzi Oberkirsch of Nature’s Fare Markets with the Preferred Nutrition Award for Excellence in Retail Sales


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Helen Sherrard named CHFA president

Helen Sherrard named CHFA president - The board of directors of the Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA) has appointed Helen Sherrard as president effective January 1, 2011.

“Helen brings a strong set of leadership skills to the association at a time when the sector faces many challenges,” said CHFA board chair Deborah Callbreath. “Her consensus-building skills and wealth of experience with CHFA members will take the association to new levels of achievement.”

“I am looking forward to taking on the coming member challenges and ensuring that the CHFA team is focused on solving member problems,” commented Helen. She has had a leading career in the association field, and in the natural health products and organics sectors. For the past year, Helen has served as CHFA director of operations and has been acting president since October 2010.

In addition, over the past 10 years, Helen has served as a senior advisor to the CHFA board of directors, including the role of board secretary. She also oversaw the development of CHFA’s awards program. •

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Annual Info Book

Great exposure, great value

July/August is our annual Info Book.  This once-a-year issue is a comprehensive listing of companies who supply products to natural health retailers.  The Info Book is broken down into several categories to make it easy for retailers to find distributors, manufacturers, brokers, raw material suppliers, associations, etc. by classification, region, product category and brand names. 

All advertisers in the Info Book receive a free full listing in all sections.  When you purchase a 1/2 page ad (or larger)  in the Info Book, you get the equivalent space for free to tell retailers your story with a Supplier Profile.  As an added bonus, your company profile will be posted on our website until next year's Info Book!  It’s a two-for-one offer that lets retailers learn about your company, your products, your people and your values. See examples of last year's supplier profiles.  

For $300, you can have a full listing in all sections and a company logo.

Non-advertisers can post a free basic listing in the Info Book.  This will include contact information only. 

Make sure your company is included in this annual listing for retailers. 

Please contact your account manager or to receive your electronic Info Book form or fax form.

Deadline to return all forms is May 9, 2011.

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Supplements for Spring

Everyone knows the following: “April showers bring May flowers.” However, that’s not the only thing the spring season brings. The warmer weather brings people outside – gardening, cycling and just being more active. Many will have a desire to refresh with a cleanse. And don’t forget spring allergies! Over the next few pages, you will find suggestions to help your customers with their spring

Supplement needs, plus some key products for the season!

As the dark days of winter will soon be a cold memory, your customers’ habits and health challenges are changing. Spring is the time for being more active, revitalizing our bodies and preparing for pollen.

Ever notice that the runners seem to come out of the woodwork at this time of year? Warmer weather invites getting out and about, weather that means walking, jogging or gardening. Unfortunately it can also mean sore muscles for those who don’t ease into it – and even for those that do. Remind your customers to keep some magnesium supplements close at hand for aching backs and some arnica or homeopathic trauma remedies for times when they’ve really overdone it.

Spring is Mother Nature’s season for renewal and regeneration. Encourage your customers to align themselves with this natural rhythm by trying a gentle, effective spring cleanse. A prominent display of items that support detox can include skin brushes and castor oil packs, liver-loving herbal combos in capsule or tinctures and more comprehensive cleansing kits.

Sneezing, snuffling and itchy, watery eyes can put a damper on our enthusiasm for this lovely time of year. To prevent allergic rhinitis, start taking daily probiotics with a quercitin complex and/or bee pollen while snow is still on the ground. By prepping the immune system well before it is challenged by airborne allergens, your customers may be able to avoid seasonal allergies altogether.

Vitamin D supplementation should continue

More than one in six Canadians suffer from hay fever, or seasonal allergic rhinitis. Depending on what a person is allergic to, allergy season can start in the early spring and last right through to the first frost of autumn. In some parts of the country, you could suffer from March to November. Prevention is one of the key ways to help with symptoms, duration and onset of seasonal allergies. Flavonoids, such as quercetin, luteolin and rosmarinic acid, help to stabilize mast cells that secrete histamine and cause allergic reactions. These compounds, along with other botanicals like butterbur and perilla, cannot only help prevent, but reduce symptoms of allergies when they are already present.

How much vitamin D to take and when it is most essential is of much debate. It takes about 18 minutes of midday sun exposure for your body to absorb the equivalent of 3000IUs of vitamin D. This is dependant on the time of the year, skin-type and how far north or south you live, here in North America. It is still a good idea to continue your vitamin D supplementation during the summer months, even though many of us actually spend at least 20 minutes a day during peak hours in the sun. The Mayo Clinic, in 2006, suggested that one in three young adults are vitamin D deficient which is why a healthy balance between sun exposure, dietary sources and supplementation of vitamin D during the summer months is the best way to prevent a possible deficiency.    by Dr. Jonothon Mainland, N.D. AOR’s medical advisor.

Natural_Factors_QuercetinPotent anti-allergy, antioxidant, and anti-aging support

Natural Factors new Quercetin Complex is an exceptional antioxidant formula that provides relief from the symptoms of allergies, fights free radical damage, and combats accelerated aging. It contains quercetin, grape seed extract, blood orange extract, turmeric extract, and CoQ10 for advanced anti-inflammatory, circulatory, and cardiovascular support. 1-800-663-8900

Immune System Support

ImmunoSense is a highly effective, specialized formula, designed to support and enhance the immune system with natural ingredients including: Astralagus, Ganopoly™ Reishi Mushroom Extract, Zinc Citrate and Selenium. By actively supporting the immune system, the body is better equipped to fight off infections and viruses that may compromise overall health.

Rich in Omega-3’s EPA & DHA

Elite Omega 3 Gems contain fish body oils from deep, cold water fish which are especially rich in the important omega-3’s EPA and DHA. This professional strength formula contains 800 mg of omega-3’s per soft gel.

Sexy Legs for Summer

Spring might be here, but you can bet that most people are already thinking about bathing suit season. When the weather warms, your legs are bound to be on full display. Proactive marketing now aimed at sexy legs in time for summer will get results, as one in two North Americans suffers from varicose veins, spider veins and swollen ankles. People often seek surgery, laser or topical treatments for vein problems but, as we all know, safe, nutritional treatments offer effective and long-term solutions. Large clinical trials on herbal formulas containing diosmin, butcher’s broom, horse chestnut and hesperidin have found that, in as little as 60 days, veins dramatically diminish in size. Swelling around the ankles is also reduced or eliminated. You cannot go wrong with promoting to your customers vein-support products that offer a money-back guarantee.   by Lorna Vanderhaeghe, president and CEO Lorna Vanderhaeghe Health Solutions, Inc.

Fish Oils All Year Round

The omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA, found in fish oil, are helpful in maintaining histamine levels before and during allergy season. Histamines are neurotransmitters that deliver messages to the body when allergy promoting pollens are in the air. Histamines trigger eyes to water, noses to run and sneeze, and other general inflammatory reactions to take place in an effort to rid the body of the allergen. EPA and DHA work on anti-inflammatory pathways and are great to pre-load with before allergy season and to take throughout that time of year. Fish oils have so many wonderful benefits that most choose to take them all year round. Creating end caps with the herbs for allergies and supplements before and during spring allows the customer to see the type of items you have available. Promoting fish oil along with these allergy supplements educates the consumer about yet another benefit to taking fish oil.

Cleanses are also popular this time of year and two important nutrients to include on your cleanse are fish oil and probiotics. Fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids which are essential fatty acids that should be consumed daily to support health and well being. Even when cleansing, omega-3 fatty acids should be included as a part of your chosen program. Probiotics are usually included as well to support gut and colon health. Cleanses rid the body of toxins and it is important they are moved through the colon quickly, and probiotics support this process. Get customers thinking about spring cleanses with some free in-store lectures and simple education pieces about the types of cleanses you offer. by Stuart Tomc, CNHP, national educator, Nordic Naturals

Immune System Support

Quercetin is a dietary flavonoid with many health benefits. It alleviates allergies by preventing certain immune cells from releasing histamines. It also blocks the enzymes responsible for producing inflammatory molecules that sensitize the body’s pain receptors.

High-Quality Passionflower

Chosen by German pharmacists as top natural product of 2010! PASCOE® Calm contains a high-quality special extract of passionflower. Passionflower has a long history of use and much research in treating stress, anxiety and sleep disturbances. It is also one of the safest herbs.

D3, the Preferred Source of Vitamin D

Natural Factors new Vitamin D3 Drops 400 IU is perfect for kids. It provides the recommended daily intake for children in just one drop. Provided in a base of organic olive oil and flaxseed oil, it has a pleasant, neutral taste that makes it easy to take directly, or add to any food or beverage. Vitamin E and olive oil act as natural preservatives to ensure freshness and stability.    800/663-8900

Heart healthy combination

Omega LDL combines the concentrated fish oil found in our Ultimate Omega formula with the important heart nutrients Red Yeast Rice and Coenzyme Q10. By combining these nutrients, this formula synergistically enhances cardiovascular function and supports healthy cholesterol levels.

Reduces the risk of CVD

Kyolic Extra Strength One A Day contains 1000mg of the proprietary Aged Garlic Extract™. Kyolic Extra Strength is among a leading line of Health Canada-approved cardiovascular supplements by Kyolic. Kyolic A.G.E. is research-proven and has been trusted by Canadians for over 30 years.

Fights Belly Fat & More

Glucosmart – containing Chirositol – in more than 30 studies at the Virginia Medical School, was shown to normalize insulin, control diabetes, stop skin tags, lower cholesterol and enhance serotonin, thereby halting sugar cravings and reducing appetite. In women, Glucosmart halts male facial hair growth, acne and PCOS. But where Glucosmart really shines is in helping to fight belly fat in both men and women.

Essential Vitamins for Optimal Health

Spring is in the air!   With the first signs of spring and the warmer weather comes seasonal allergies, cleansing diets and outdoor activities. The following supplements are important for supporting vitality and wellbeing during the coming months:

1.) Vitamin C – An essential antioxidant for any immune dysfunction, injury repair and detoxification protocol.

2.) Quercitin - Inhibits the release of histamines and other inflammatory compounds from mast cells, thus reducing the allergic/inflammatory response.

3.) Omega 3’s – Essential anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic and cardio protective properties.

4.) Curcumin - This spice is cancer protective, a potent antioxidant, supports liver function and is anti-inflammatory.

5.) Milk Thistle – An essential detoxifying agent that supports liver function, and acts as an antioxidant, too.

by Dr. Marita Schauch BSc ND. Dr. Schauch’s health articles educate the public about health and wellness and have been featured in numerous print media.  She resides and has her clinical practice in Victoria B.C.

EPA, natural inflammation fighter

Spring and summer are just around the corner. This means more and more Canadians will be getting outside, enjoying the warm weather and all the physical activities this brings: cycling, gardening, yard work, etc. Some people will be doing their annual internal spring cleanse; others will have to face the challenges of spring allergies.

Omega-3’s are an important consideration for people getting back into the great outdoors. Sardines, salmon and mackerel provide beneficial fats that may help protect your body against allergies. One of the Omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), is a natural inflammation fighter.

Eating more of these cold-water fish or taking a fish oil supplement is especially important if allergies affect breathing, such as in those who suffer from allergic asthma. The natural inflammation-balancing actions of EPA ease the irritation in our nasal passages and lungs, therefore reducing the likelihood of an allergic response.

Keep reference articles on hand that illustrate the benefits of nutrients. While health claims are an area that retailers want to avoid, there are many educational articles available to articulate and reinforce the benefits of natural approaches to better health.  by Jolie Root, LPN, LNC, Carlson’s nutritionist/educator

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Sequel Naturals wins seven Alive awards

Sequel Naturals calls superior customer service and product innovation “a winning strategy” and the major reason the company recently took home seven Alive top product awards for 2010.

Retailers from coast-to-coast voted for the best consumer products in a variety of natural health categories for the annual awards showcase which were developed to recognize outstanding product innovation while enhancing the credibility of natural health products.

Capturing gold medals were Vega Whole Food Health Optimizer in the Multivitamins & Supplements category, Vega Sport Performance Optimizer in the Fitness & Weight Management category and Vega Sport Performance Protein, the successful sport-focused follow-up launched in 2010, in the New Supplements section.

Silver medal winners were Vega Antioxidant EFA Oil Blend in the Healthy Oils & EFAS category, Vega Whole Food Vibrancy Bars in the Natural Food, Bars & Beverages category and MacaSure Chocolat in the Functional Foods category.

MacaSure captured a bronze medal in the Men’s Products category.

“We are flattered and thankful that the health food retailers, who have many products to choose from, chose ours to be best-in-class in so many categories. It is a great honour and we take great pride in these awards,” said Charles Chang, Sequel president and founder. The seven awards represents the most Sequel has won in its five-year participation in the Alive awards program.

For more information, please visit •

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La Boite a Grains marks 30 years

La_Boite_a_Grains_smlCongratulations to Pierre Menard, Real Deslauriers and their team at La Boite à Grains in Gatineau, QC on reaching the 30-year milestone. Pierre was one of the original partners when the doors opened in early march 1980. Industry friends, family and customers joined Pierre and his team on November 30 to mark the anniversary."..."

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Are the new regulations helping retailers

Not when NOW Foods discontinues 53 NHPs due to the regulations' inappropriate standards of evidence, says retailer John Biggs


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Manuka Honey

Flora now has Manuka Honey

Flora is now the exclusive Canadian distributor of Manuka Health's MGO™ Manuka Honey. Guaranteed potency, wild crafted and 100 per cent pure New Zealand. MGO™ Manuka Honey is the only food in the world with a scientifically demonstrated high dietary methylglyoxal content. For more information or to order, please call 877/463-5672.

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New gluten relief and tea tree oil products

Natural Factors has introduced two new products.

Gluten Relief contains a proprietary enzyme blend to digest proteins, carbs, and fats, supporting the digestion of gluten, dairy and other difficult-to-digest foods. Gluten Relief reduces the symptoms of bloating, cramps, and gas, and normalizes the inflammatory response to help reduce allergic reactions. It can also reduce skin irritations, and enhances energy levels, improving overall health.

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CNHR News Podcast

cnhr radio hour

News, Views and Happenings in the world of Canadian Natural Health.

Check out this month's podcast here

July/August Issue


It is the once-a-year issue of CNHR where we turn the spotlight on to our industry suppliers. We share your stories of innovation, determination and creativity in bringing your products to market. It is the opportunity for suppliers to show and tell how they support the natural health retailers.

What is the "deal?"

It is our best offer of the year: When you buy a full or half page ad, you get a FREE full or half page to tell your company’s story. In this issue, our editorial is your company story.

Contact: Candace Sicari - or Katherine Stevens -

Community Board

Watch here for Job Postings, Wanted Ads, For Hire, etc. To add, contact Donna

Check out the Community Board