Canada's business magazine for traditional natural health retailers

Avril planning new stores in Sherbrooke, Laval

avrilAvril Supermarché Santé is growing again.   The Quebec-based natural health food retailer has attracted national attention in recent years for the creation of its beautiful stores, and now the company has announced the opening of two more.

Continue reading

Show buzz, CHFA West


A few things that are taking place at CHFA West April 6-9

Continue reading

Guelph Organic Conference January 26-29

Guelph Organic Conference January 26-29

If you are looking for a boost of energy and enthusiasm, don’t forget the Guelph Organic Conference is coming January 26-29 to the University of Guelph. 

Continue reading

CHFA Quebec February 10,11

CHFA Quebec February 10,11

CHFA Quebec is returning to the Palais des congrès de Montréal on February 10 & 11.  With just over 130 exhibitors, this event delivers a unique opportunity for local retailers to meet with manufacturers and distributors from across Canada. 

Continue reading

AQN: Practical help for Canada's health food stores

Assured Quality Natural (AQN) is officially up and running.  AQN is an extensive marketing initiative and it has one goal only: to help independent natural health food stores remain strong and vibrant in their communities.  
Continue reading

Industry needs to come together to oppose Health Canada’s proposal to regulate NHPs as drugs


nhps are not drugsThe following is a letter from CHFA president Helen Long.  Please read it and take appropriate action.

If you were at CHFA East, you were probably hearing a lot of buzz on the show floor about #NHPsAreNotDrugs, our latest campaign in support of the natural health product industry. If you weren’t in attendance, this is a critical issue for our entire industry and we need everyone to help.

Continue reading

Bruce Cole wins John Holtmann Award

Bruce ColeCHFA presentation of Bruce Cole accepting the John Holtmann Award in Vancouver.

Continue reading

Sangster’s: three new stores opening by July

Sangster’s: three new stores opening by July

Sangster’s Franchise has started the year off with a bang and the announcement that three new stores are scheduled to open before July.  “We’re excited to be going into some new markets for us, where the choice of a good selection of natural remedies and organics has been lacking,” explained Wanda Wilson, vice-president of Sangster’s Franchise head office.  One store is opening in Alberta in April, while the other two stores open in Ontario: one in May, and the other tentatively set for June.   

Sangster’s 45th anniversary celebration started off in January and continues with great sales and prizes given away throughout the year. 

Continue reading

Eden wins Trailblazer award

Grocery Headquarters Magazine has again selected Eden Foods as a winner of the magazine’s Selling Wellness Trailblazer Award for 2016.

The awards recognize innovation within the wellness category and are designed to honour those companies and organizations that have had the most impact on the industry. Grocery Headquarters’ editorial team used a number of criteria in reviewing candidates by selecting companies that value and exhibit a strong commitment to innovation, creativity, transparency and sustainability.

This is the sixth time Eden Foods has been awarded a Trailblazer Award by Grocery Headquarters. 

Continue reading

CHFA West, May 12-15: focus on innovation

Although the annual CHFA West conference and trade show is being held a bit later in the spring this year, the industry can be assured of one thing; it will be well worth the wait.  The tagline – Showcasing Innovation, Inspiring Retailers – sets the stage for what you can expect. And with the show floor already more than 90 per cent sold, retailers can be assured that there will be lots of new and exciting products to explore. The conference portion runs May 12 and 13, while the trade show floor is open May 14 and 15.

Continue reading

Rising Stars session: May 12

New this year, CHFA has partnered with the Rising Stars Leadership Group to bring an executive education forum to the conference program.  This forum will feature content developed specifically for retail managers in the natural foods industry and will be an exclusive offering for CHFA members.  In addition to the forum, which will run on May 12, the conference program on May 13 has incorporated a robust line-up of speakers and topics that will help retailers to excel in a very competitive marketplace. Topics will include customer service, merchandising, employee performance management and so much more. 

Watch for more details in the CHFA West show issue coming in the May-June issue of CNHR.  Until then, regular updates on the conference and trade show are available at and, if you are not already receiving the show email promotions, send your contact information to to get on the list of subscribers. 

Continue reading

Organika lends a hand in ravaged community

For the past two years, Organika has supported Fundamentals for Change (FFC) with donations of supplements, school supplies and clothing.  Most recently, the village of Riverton, Jamaica was the beneficiary of FCC’s efforts to make a difference. 

Continue reading

Guelph Organic Trade Show

Guelph Organic Trade Show

The 35th Annual Guelph Organic Conference & Trade Show (Jan. 28-31, 2016) will connect hundreds of like-minded individuals again this year.

“It’s a wonderful showcase of organic foods – many Ontario based,” says Almut Pfenning of Pfenning’s Organic & More in St. Agatha, Ontario.  “It’s so awesome, it gives me goose bumps.”  For over 18 years, Almut, her husband Wolfgang and their children have had a booth at the event.  “We are educators in food.  We want to convey the message that it is possible to heal yourself with food and to use food as medicine.  It can be possible to lose touch with food when you are also selling creams, supplements and other items,” says Almut.

“The people at the conference understand the value of good food.  You look at them and their faces have colour and rosy cheeks.  They know how to cook and appreciate the vegetables that we sell at our booth,” notes Almut. 

Not only does the conference draw hundreds of consumers, like those shopping with Almut, it also attracts many other key players in the organic category such as retailers, growers, market garden producers, suppliers, advocates and others.

“We see a lot of our own growers and get a chance to talk with them in person,” says Almut.  “We have also made connections for our store.”  For example, “we have found suppliers of meat and apples through the conference.”

 “It’s a real cross section of people who come to the conference,” notes Tomas Nimmo, Conference Manager.  “From government representatives to certifiers to growers, to movers and shakers – we’ve got them all attending.  That’s a lot of knowledge and resources gathered in one spot.”

“Organics is in an upswing right now, but it’s important the sector really solidifies its position,” says Tomas.  “Like any expanding business model, there are challenges.  By having strong connections, the sector will be better prepared to deal with whatever comes its way,” he emphasizes.

“What always strikes me about the conference, and the organic sector, is the willingness of people to give information and share,” notes Tomas.  “I always say ‘never stop promoting.’  I’ll rest a little easier when organic is more than 10% of market share.  That’s when it will be really big,” says Tomas.

This year’s conference will feature over 150 exhibitors including Pfenning’s Organic (both the farm distributor and Almut’s store),  Ontario Natural Food Co-op, Nature’s Path, Crofters, Manitoba Harvest Hemp Foods, Sunshine Pickles, Organics Live and dozens more.  The workshop schedule is jam packed with 42 program offerings covering a diverse range of topics including certification, pollination, urban gardening, organic crop & livestock production, biodynamics and much more. 

The Guelph Organic Conference takes place January 28 to 31, 2016.  Registration, maps & details can be found at  For those interested in exhibiting in 2017, contact Tomas Nimmo at 705-444-0923 or to be added to the waiting list.  •

Continue reading

ColdQ all-natural oral spray

ColdQ  all-natural oral spray

United Biopharmaceuticals Inc. (UBI) has introduced cold­Q enhancement, an all-natural oral spray, free of pesticides, heavy metals and preservatives.  This unique herbal formula was used by hospitals in China to save the lives of many people during the SARS epidemic of 2003, and was registered for
sale in Canada by UBI, a wholly owned
Canadian company. cold­Q is available in a small countertop six pack bilingual display.  Available through Purity Life.

Continue reading

Preferred adds new products: VegiDay & SeaRich Omega-3

Preferred adds new products:  VegiDay & SeaRich Omega-3

Preferred Nutrition is now distributing VegiDay and SeaRich Omega-3.  The VegiDay line provides “energy from the ground up” with raw, organic plant based proteins and organic coconut snack food.VegiDay is part of a growing movement that encourages everyone to welcome and sustain life by reducing consumption of animal protein.

SeaRich Omega-3 is made using the highest quality omega-3 fish oil. To create a truly delicious family of products, fish oils have been blended with natural, non-GMO flavours to create formulas every member of the family can enjoy including grapefruit punch, coconut-lime and lemon meringue.

 For more information on the VegiDay and SeaRich Omega-3 lines call your Preferred Nutrition account manager or 888/826-9625.  •

Continue reading

St. Francis buys 50 acre organic farm

St. Francis buys 50 acre organic farm

One a recent road trip, I made my first-ever visit to St. Francis Herb Farms, a family-owned business that has been operating for 27 years. St. Francis is situated in the beautiful Madawaska Valley, a unique, remote, cottage country region, two hours northwest of Ottawa, and three and a half hours northeast of Toronto. Paul Rivett-Carnac is the company president.  His parents – Monique and Jeremy – are the company founders, and today, Paul is a co-owner of the business, along with his wife Caitlin.

The big news at St. Francis during the visit was the announcement of the company’s recent purchase of a 50 acre farm.  “This will take us back to the early days of the company,” explained Paul, “when my parents grew and harvested many of the herbs.  On our new farm, we will grow many of the herbs we use in St. Francis formulations.  Over the years, we have grown so much, and seen multiple expansions to our manufacturing facilities, we have contracted local organic farmers to help augment herb supplies.  The new farm will allow us to – along with our current farming partners – further source as many herbs locally as possible.”                          Story/photo: Bruce W. Cole

Continue reading

Kardish takes home top retailer award

Kardish takes home  top retailer award

Three Ontario retailers walked away with hardware during the annual CHFA East Awards on September 19 in Toronto.

Kardish Health Food Centre in Ottawa was named winner of the Brock Elliott Memorial Award for Excellence in Retailing.   Eamonn McKay of  Fiddleheads Health and Nutrition in Waterloo was presented with the CHFA Excellence in Retail Sales award.  Foodsmiths in Perth captured  the CHFA Sustainability Award – Retailer category.  The only non-Ontarian to win a retailer award was Story Sheidow of The Turning Point, in Montague, PEI., who took home the Gordon Storie Memorial Bursary.


Continue reading

CHFA East: September 17 to 20, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, South Building

CHFA East: September 17 to 20, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, South Building

Summer may be winding down but the industry is just gearing up for what is sure to be the best CHFA East to-date.

Continue reading

Aura Cacia amber glass bottles let consumers DIY

Aura Cacia amber glass bottles let consumers DIY

Aura Cacia is pleased to be supporting consumers with easy ways to make safe and natural personal care at home using essential oils.

Continue reading

BioK+ Vanilla in stores now

The long-awaited Bio-K Plus Vanilla Probiotic arrived in stores as of August 1st. 

Continue reading

CNHR News Podcast

cnhr radio hour

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

Check out this month's podcast here

Coming Up in the Next Issue...

CHFA West :  February 22-25

Reach your key retail customers in CNHR’s Show Preview Issue.

An early show requires early messaging. Get your Spring sales message out early with an ad in CNHR. Reach the key retailers well before CHFA West. Here’s what your ad can do for you:

• share your spring promotional plan with all retailers

• help your sales team reach sales targets

• introduce your new products BEFORE the show

• tell retailers about your show specials early

• help open doors for your sales team

• create traffic at your booth

• solidify brand loyalty

• tell retailers about your new services, too!

• support all of your in-store, digital and consumer marketing efforts

Advertisers: FREE value-added features As an advertiser, you’ll be in one of our biggest issues of the year. (There will be loads of bonus circulation during CHFA West.) Along with your ad being viewed by more than 10,000 owners, managers, buyers, product recommenders and floor sales staff, you also get some great free editorial opportunities, including Trade Talk, Product Profiles and Pre-Show Buzz. Here are the details: Trade Talk is one of the highest read sections of CNHR and your vital link with retailers. Keep current and potential new customers updated on your new products, new staff, new website, new promotions, etc. Deadline for Trade Talk: November 7

We have lots of advertising options at many price points. Tell me what ad size you’re considering or what your budget is, and I will personally customize a proposal just for you. I’ll explain all of the value-added features CNHR has to offer your company!

Please contact:,,

Join the cnhr Newsletter

Community Board

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

Check out the Community Board