March Break is a big deal for many families, but there’s something else going on right now that we think you should know about: National Butchers Week!
This celebration was initiated in the United Kingdom back just over a decade over, and it remains popular today. Some of the best butchers across the country put on a series of events celebrating the great work and quality products being produced. Awards were given out to some outstanding butchers and their teams, and customers got to enjoy some of the highlights – a win for everyone.
We might be all the way across the world here in Ontario, but there’s something to be said for recognizing and celebrating a craft that has shaped our family and our business. Hearing all about the National Butchers Week tradition got us thinking about our own history and traditions – here’s why we’re always happy to celebrate the best of our industry, no matter how close or far.
A part of our family’s history
Grandpa VG was a black market butcher in Holland during World War 2. When he came to Canada, he decided to buy a butcher shop, bringing his knowledge and skills to a new community. This is when his son – our father, Wayne Van Groningen – learned the butcher trade over many years of hands-on education in the shop. Today, our father has been a butcher for over 50 years and passed the tradition down to us, his four sons.
When we were kids, we hung out in the shop for hours on end. If we weren’t in school, we’d be at the store with our family, following directions and helping out. This is where we learned everything we know today – not only from our father, but from the other great butchers on his team who worked hard and showed us the trade.
As of 2019, VG Meats has a team of 15 butchers who are dedicated to the same excellence our grandfather believed in. We believe in this trade and truly love our work.
We’re also dedicated to helping train new butchers at the same high level we were taught. Through our staff training as well as our work with students from Fanshawe College, we are able to bring butchers onto our line and teach them the trade we are passionate about.
Happy Butchers Week
You don’t need to travel across the world to find the best butchers around – they’re right here in Simcoe and Stoney Creek! That said, we are truly happy to recognize and celebrate any and all butchers who share our passion, ethics and dedication to quality.
Happy Butchers Week to our friends in the UK, and to everyone else who contributes to this great trade.