Growing up on a farm, Peter Fehr didn’t realize how good he had it until he moved to the city. He had easy access to fresh everything—fresh garden produce and home raised beef, chicken and pork. Realizing this, Peter saw an opportunity to help people eat better.
Peter’s love for the culinary arts didn’t just come to him out of the blue. He received culinary training in high school and post high school in various establishments including a kids camp, hospital kitchen and fly-in fishing resort located in Northern Manitoba. All of this combined experience is what led Peter to starting Gourmet Inspirations in 2013 which aims to create gourmet specialty food products that are versatile, convenient and easy to use in your own kitchen.
While working as a chef at a fly-in fishing resort, Peter made a creamy peppercorn whiskey sauce for a steak dinner which was so good that a guest told him that he needed to bottle it up and sell it! “The rest is history,” Peter explained. It was because of this special recipe and guest that inspired Gourmet Inspirations.
Today, Gourmet Inspirations offers four delectable sauces such as the Creamy Peppercorn Whiskey sauce which inspired it all, Sweet and Spicy Lemon, Strawberry Balsamic with Basil and a Chocolate Port sauce. All products are free of preservatives and are gluten free.
To date, Peter coins his biggest milestone as being listed with one of Western Canada’s top grocery store chains, Save on Foods. Save on Foods has chosen Gourmet Inspirations to be one of their local Manitoba suppliers. “The exciting part is that besides being able to be stocked in their Manitoba stores, if the product does well, it has the potential to move across Canada to their 160 stores,” Peter shares. But to get Peter to where he is today and to help him continue to move onward and up, he has had to overcome some big challenges, one of those being product education. He explained that his sauces are “finishing sauces” however; the general public doesn’t know what this term is or means. “I have not seen a finishing sauce on a grocery store shelf,” he explained. “So this takes a lot of efforts in sampling products at stores, shows and markets to educate the consumer.”
When overcoming challenges such as the product education one mentioned above, Peter mentioned that his mentor he received through the Futurpreneur Start-Up Program as being the person who helps provide moral support and most importantly, keeps him on track. “It’s been great to have someone to check in with on a somewhat regular basis,” he explains. “My mentor asks great questions and helps me process where things are at in my business and where we plan to head.”
As an entrepreneur, it can be easy to get caught up in the day-to-day and forget to take a step back and look at the big picture. Which is why Peter recommends that you take a break every once in a while, even when it may seem impossible. “I know this can be hard to do, but you won’t last long term if you don’t take care of yourself. Take a bit of an extended break for one week at least once per year and do some resting and visioning for your next year. This can be an inspiring time to be refreshed and renewed with vision for the coming year.”
To find out where you can get your hands on some Gourmet Inspirations products, click here or shop in their online store.
Written By: Lauren Marinigh, Social Media & Content Creation Coordinator, Futurpreneur Canada