PICTOU COUNTY – It’s a taste of home for those who might be far away.
Once Bonvie got Pictou County Pizza up and running in 2014, he decided it might be time to further market his brand, especially the pizza sauce itself, which is a family recipe perfected more than 50 years ago, in 1966.
That’s why jars of Pictou County Pizza are sold in Sobeys outlets through Atlantic Canada.
“It took me two years of work to be able to put them in the stores,” says Bonvie, who praised Sobeys for working with him over that time span, helping him to get where he wanted to be.
At the Pictou County Chamber of Commerce’s business achievement awards held on Oct. 11 at the deCoste Performing Arts Centre, Bonvie was recognized by the chamber, when he collected the Export Achievement award.
While he said he was honoured and humbled when he was told of the award, “I was kind of surprised, because we’re not really a big exporter.”
But Pictou county’s brown sauce has fans from coast to coast – those who grew up with it refuse to leave it behind, even when they’re living elsewhere. H produces about a thousand jars per month, he said; one jar can be used for two 12 or 14-inch pizzas, depending of course, on personal taste.
“We’ve had our sauce in every province in Canada, the Northwest Territories and the Yukon,” he said.
Of course, he doesn’t give himself all the credit: his wife Angela worked at the Ambercrombie Road restaurant for about 18 months when it first opened. And he admits that, while he was off trying to grow the business since, Angela looked after the thousands of things both big and small as they were raising their children.
It took, as he said, a lot of hard work and long hours once they started Pictou County Pizza four years ago.
“The first two years I was working a hundred hours every week,” he recalls. “Every time we’d get a foot ahead, there’d be another wall in front of us. But we’d break through it.”