The staff at Earth + City are super passionate about creating the best products they can using local, organic and seasonal produce, made with sustainability in mind.
Get to know the awesome people who prepare the food items that you love and find out how they joined the Earth + City team. This week we chatted to Ashley, Earth + City’s General Manager.
Tell us a bit about yourself and how you started working at Earth + City...
My name is Ashley, I am the General Manager of Earth + City, which means I run the day to day operations of the business. I studied International Development at university and it was while studying and travelling abroad that my passion for food, agriculture the environment and food advocacy grew. I later completed my post-grad diploma in Project Management and then ventured into Toronto’s local food and farmers’ markets scene, where I worked with various farms and food vendors.
I started working at Earth + City five or six years ago after stepping away from work at fellow market vendor ChocoSol. My partner at the time - now wife - Lisa Sweetman asked if I’d like to join her business. Her and her business partner Cassandra, owners of Earth + City, thought I could be a real asset to the team. Although hesitant at first, mixing home and work life, the transition was flawless and I’ve never looked back since.
Over the years, I’ve dabbled in all aspects of the business and helped create the systems and positions with staff so they now run smoothly. I’ve been in this current role since September as Lisa and Cassandra ventured onto other things in their professional lives.
What do you love about food?
I love the community aspect of it, that relationships and community develops around eating food. Over a meal you can be with friends, family, farmers who’ve grown it and build relationships around that.
I also love seeing it from start to finish. Getting your hands dirty growing things in the garden, seeing the food grow and from there harvesting it to create something totally new and delicious. You can be creative making various things. ‘Food full circle’ (which is our motto at Earth + City) - that’s what I love most.
What is your favourite Earth + City product?
The Cowgirl Cookie and I really dig the Cinnamon Seed Bread. And Concord Grape or Watermelon Lemonade in the summer. Mmmmmm…..
Which season is your favourite?
Summer, for sure. I love the hot, humid weather and all the seasonal produce that comes with it.
That’s changed over the years, it used to be all things gluten but then I realised I couldn’t eat that stuff. I will always love pasta, love fresh fruit, love watermelon and strawberries and raspberries. Summer fruits!
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Did you know that one of your favourite Earth and City products is a collaboration with another awesome Toronto-based small business? That’s right...our crackers contain leftover nutrient-rich juice pulp from Village Juicery’s cold-pressed juices.
These days there are apps for everything from playing with someone else’s dog to sailing on someone else’s boat. There’s even one for using other people’s toilets!
It’s called Garden Sharing... the idea is to build a sense of community, give people access to green space and create a supply of healthy, local and organic fruits and vegetables.