Canada Hemp Foods was founded in 2006 by Robert Rae and Wally Venechuk and is located on the beautiful Sunshine Coast, BC, Canada.
Our story begins with a painful itch that wouldn’t go away…
Back in 2005, Robert had just survived a health-depleting year of surgery, numerous chemotherapy treatments, radiation therapy and finally a stem-cell replacement procedure to eradicate his Stage 4B non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The treatments were a success but the chemotherapy and side effects of the stem-cell replacement had left him with severely dry and itchy skin.
On top of that, thanks to the prednisone doses he’d been taking, he now weighed 225 pounds—40 pounds heavier than his normal weight.
When Robert’s friend Wally learned of his persistent skin condition and health problems, he suggested that Robert add hemp to his diet.
Wally was all-too familiar with the topic of dry and itchy skin… he had been a long-time sufferer of eczema who had searched in vain for a product that would heal his painfully dry, cracked skin. He’d heard from his daughter that hemp oil could be beneficial for eczema. Desperate for relief, he decided to give it a try.
Within days the eczema symptoms had dissipated—and within weeks they had virtually disappeared!
When Robert heard Wally’s story, he was skeptical, but agreed to take home a pound of hulled hemp seed. He added it to his morning shakes, smoothies, and cereal—and within days, his general skin condition had improved dramatically.
And in just a few months, without making any other significant changes to his lifestyle or diet, he lost that extra 40 pounds and was back to his fighting weight of 185 pounds.
For the first time since starting his cancer treatments, he felt great and had a ton of energy.
A valued source of nutrients for thousands of years—but nobody knew about it
Now both die-hard hemp fans, Robert and Wally kept hearing more stories from friends, family, and other people who had added hemp seed or hemp oil to their diets – and seen huge improvements in health conditions such as diabetes, weight management, low energy, and persistent skin conditions.
As Robert and Wally researched the history and current state of affairs regarding the manufacturing, marketing, and use of hemp foods, they were shocked to discover how little was known about this incredible plant’s attributes and abilities.
Hemp is one of the earliest domesticated plants and had been used to make clothing, rope, paper, building materials, in addition to being prized for its nutritional oil and seeds—for thousands of years! Yet these days many people think that hemp is the same thing as marijuana (nope!) and had no idea that up until the 1930s, hemp had been one of the most valuable crops on the planet.
To learn more about hemp and its history, click here.
For the Betterment of Humankind
Robert and Wally knew that other people could experience huge benefits by adding hemp to their diet. That’s why they decided to form Canada Hemp Foods, a company dedicated to the advancement of hemp foods as a natural, earth-friendly, easy-to-grow food source for the betterment of the human condition.
… Because hemp is proof that Mother Nature loves us.
Robert and Wally launched Canada Hemp Foods in 2006. As a business that basically started out as “two guys in a garage,” the company has grown to offer nine popular hemp food products that are available in more than 200 stores across Canada and the US, as well as Amazon, Walgreens.com and our online store.
To learn how you can easily incorporate hemp into your diet, check out our recipes page for great meal suggestions for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
And if you have any questions about our business or products please email us at email@example.com.
We’re excited to help you enjoy a healthier, more delicious life with hemp!
Hemp is proof that Mother Nature loves us.
Meet the Team
Robert Rae lives in Gibsons with his wife, Josefa. He spent most of his life in Vancouver, BC where he enjoyed a 10-year career as a ship’s agent.
After recovering from cancer in 2004, Robert realized his immune deficiency wouldn’t allow him to return to his chosen field. When he discovered the nutritional benefits of hemp foods he started Canada Hemp Foods in 2006 and has never looked back. When not working (which is rare), Robert enjoys being out on the water in his boat.
Josefa Fritz Barham was born in the Bavarian Alps. Having grown up on a family farm, she focused her studies on organic farming and agricultural management. Josefa then went on to study at the Peter Zeiler School of Art in Munich and worked for over six years at a PR agency. She emigrated to Canada in 1997 and met Robert soon afterwards. As an artist, Josefa spends the majority of her time pursuing her passion and career in painting. Her role in the company ranges from coordinating deliveries on the Sunshine Coast to helping Robert sustain his vision for the company’s future.
Diana Rae lives in Madeira Park, Pender Harbour. She is Robert’s sister and guiding hand on all financial matters. Diana holds a CMA and CPA designation and in June of 2013 was appointed co-CEO of the Sunshine Coast Community Services Society. She was also the donor for Robert’s stem cell replacement therapy.
Wayne Howard is our VP of Sales and Marketing. His primary function is to secure distribution and retail opportunities in the USA. Wayne has extensive experience in the food and beverage industry in the US, including Vice President of Sales, Ben Franklin Retail Sales Stores.
Lynda McDonaugh joined our team as bookkeeper in 2013 to assist Canada Hemp Foods with meeting the ever-increasing demand for our products. She has an extensive and varied clerical background including fifteen years in the banking industry.
Helena Rae is a graphic designer and illustrator. She graduated with a BDes from the Alberta College of Art & Design in 2000, and has over fifteen years experience in a variety of design areas such as branding, package design, kids educational materials, and advertising. She created the Canada Hemp Foods brand identity and packaging, and continues to provide design and illustration solutions for all our marketing needs.
As CEO of M. Magas & Associates Inc., Marilyn Magas has provided business support to over 160 local startups since 2005. Her passion is working with the entrepreneurial spirit and generating new ideas. She is active in the community and economic development. Marilyn is working with Canada Hemp Foods Ltd., by assisting our business to realize its full potential.