Calgary butter producer Foothills Creamery can't keep up with demand
Butter demand means Alberta may have to import dairy from overseas
Foothills Creamery produces about five million pounds of butter a year, but that's not enough to keep up with this year's demand.
"Foothills Creamery has turned down about $3 million in business in the last three months because we just can't get the supply of cream or butter from the Canadian Dairy Commission," said Don Bayrack, the president and founder of the Calgary company.
- MORE CALGARY NEWS | Calgary Food Bank CEO's greatest wish is to put himself out of a job
- MORE CALGARY NEWS | Lakeview residents say 'No thanks' to McDonald's Canada
Bayrack says those ingredients usually come from Eastern Canada.
But a recent spike in demand for butter — partly fuelled by the health craze around fat — means Alberta may have to import dairy from the U.S., New Zealand and Uruguay.
Bayrack estimates it will take until April for things to get back to normal, but says the backlog is already taking a bite out of his business.
"We don't sell a lot of ice cream in the winter time so butter is the mainstay. And then when you haven't got it, yeah, that really hurts for sure."
Butter shelves 'half full'
Bayrack says sales are up about five per cent and consumers are already feeling the looming butter shortage.
"I know there's one Walmart store in Calgary, my friend was just there, and for the last four days they haven't had any butter on the shelf at all," he said.
"Most of the butter shelves are half full right now."
So if you're planning on doing some holiday baking, you may want to start stocking up.
"I'd say if you want some butter for Christmas, you better go get it," said Bayrack.
To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.
By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.
Become a CBC Account Holder
Join the conversation Create account
Already have an account?