EDITOR Lee Atwater

RESEARCH MANAGER Brent Brown RESEARCH Gwen Chaisson Alia Morash Ashley Lindsay EDITORIAL David MacDonald Jamie Barrie Katie Davis CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Janice Buckler Denise Alison Jody Euloth








communities whole and healthy follow- ing their vision that everyone belongs in the community and should have the opportunity to enjoy laughter, love, hap- piness and friendship. That is why what the NSRAA does is almost as inspiration- al as the people that they serve. Community is more than roads, build- ings and people, it is about all resi- dents; human, animal and insect. To be honest, we never understood how important bees were until one of our directors told us about Manzer Apiary Inc after attending a Connecting @ Acadia event earlier this year. This innovated company located in Digby, Nova Scotia has taken it upon itself to building better beehives. Their innova- tive hive allows more bees to survive the harsh winter climates, which leads to increased pollination in the spring for farmers and larger crop growth. With the demands for food growing at a record rate, these hives will be an important piece to the puzzle for more than just the survival of bees. We hope you enjoy this issue and we look forward to telling your stories of innovation and success with others. AIDACA MEDIA TEAM

I n the month of May we start to have a better grasp on how 2017 is shaping up both personally and professionally. It is time to reset strategies to meet our goals for the rest of the year, whether your goal is renegotiating NAFTA or just getting your “to do list” on your desk cleared off. Setting goals and resetting strategies to meet business needs and changing economic conditions is what makes good organizations great and grow regard- less of the industry or sector your company is in. This month we feature Maple Leaf Homes which started operations back in 1984, with a 7000 square feet factory in Fredericton focusing on the New Brunswick marketing. Today Maple Leaf Homes has grown its operation, to include a 130 000 square feet facility, building residential and commercial buildings for custom- ers throughout Atlantic Canada, Ontario, Quebec, and the Eastern United States and are considered one of the leaders in the industry. This did not happen over- night, it took 32 years of adjusting strategy and revisiting business plans and keen market focus, keeping on top of trends and being a true innovator in their industry and creating partnership with the best in the their respective industry to not only meet, but exceed the expectation of their clients. We look forward to following their progress in innovation and design for the next 32 years and beyond. A community starts one home at a time and we believe that everyone deserves to have the opportunity to have an active role in the community where they live. This is why we are very proud of the Nova Scotia Residential Agencies Association article. If you’re a Nova Scotia resident or even a one-time visitor, chances are you’ve felt the impact of the Nova Scotia Residential Agencies Association (NSRAA). The NSRAA is a coalition of non-profit residential agencies serving persons with disabilities. However, themission of these 46member agencies province-wide can be as diverse as the com- munities and people they strive to serve. NSRAA spoke with Spotlight on Business Magazine from their respective offices in April about their collective mission to make

PO Box 350007 Halifax, Nova Scotia B3M 0G3 P: 613 699 6672 E:




There’s nothing better than a good story teller who has the facts – the hard numbers – on the tip of their tongue for that moment when something really sparks their interest. I had a history teacher in high school like that. His side stories were the thing of legend. When I spoke with Erika Jones, the Marketing Manager at Maple Leaf Homes in Fredericton, New Brunswick, in mid-May, I was immediately reminded of those fact-laden detours in the classroom that made every topic come to life. As she detailed the history and current operations of the award winning and industry leading modular housing manufacturer, it was like I was walking alongside her on the factory floor.


How many busy brothers does it take to build a better beehive? It depends of which Manzer brother you ask. Brian and Owen Manzer are the brains behind the E-Z Hive, a modified top bar beehive that has caught the attention of researchers and hobby beekeepers alike. When Brian spoke with Spotlight on Business Magazine in May, I couldn’t help noticing that the origin story of the E-Z hive and Manzer Apiary Inc. in Digby, Nova Scotia shares a distinct similarity with a famous page in the history of science.







10 MAPLE LEAF HOMES Built for Life

18 STRATIGRO SMALL BUSINESS TIP FOR MAY Five Stages of Small Business Growth


If you asked the average Canadian on the street why softwood is import- ant most probably couldn’t tell you what it is, let alone it’s critical value to Canada’s economy. In contrast, ask someone working in the industry and they will educate you on the jobs softwood lumber creates and the positive impact it has on GDP. They’ll also likely explain that Canada has also had a long-stand- ing trade dispute since 1982 with their biggest market the United States. It remains the most troublesome and enduring disagreement between the two nations. That is why no one was surprised that President Trump jumped into the issue head first with a vow to make sure the arrangement is fair...

28 MANZAR APIARY INC. Queen Bees Everywhere owe these 2 Kings of Heart (and Mind) a Curtsy



Trump is having a hard time seeing the forest for the tariffs



Making Communities Whole Again

64 HOLISTIC HEALTH TIP FOR MAY BY JANICE BUCKLER What Most People don’t know about Vitamin C


If you’re a Nova Scotia resident or even a one-time visitor, chances are you’ve felt the impact of the Nova Scotia Residential Agencies Asso- ciation (NSRAA). Sure, a stop by will tell you that it’s “a coalition of non-profit residential agencies serving persons with dis- abilities,” but the mission of these 46 member agencies province-wide can be as diverse as the communities and people they strive to serve...



A IDACA MEDIA understands that small and medium size enterprises and businesses are key to the successful growth of any economy and just as import- ant as big businesses to the global economy as a whole. By putting a spotlight on your business, organization or commu- nity with effective and interactive media and advertising we will help you capture the interest of business leaders and potential clients, giving you an opportunity to promote your brand and grow market share through mobile, online, print and social media support, helping your business connect and stay engaged with your customers.



When I spoke with Virginia Tudor – the owner and operator of the Brier Island Lodge – over the phone in mid-March, a nor’easter had just swept across Nova Scotia. If you’re not familiar with Nova Scotia geography, Brier Island is the most southwesterly point of the province and sits at the entrance of the Bay of Fundy. (For you birds of passage, it’s a four hour drive along NS-101 from the Halifax Stanfield International Airport.) Spotlight on Business Magazine’s Halifax office wasn’t worse for wear that morning, but I was curious how the approximately 200 permanent residents of this island – which is only 7.5 km (4.7 mi) long and 2.5 km (1.6 mi) wide – fared against the freezing rain, sleet, snow, and gales. “We’re half a kilometre from Long Island with the Grand Passage between us, so Mother Nature is truly in control,” she told me with a halting stoicism in her voice. “



made for the entire Canadian furni- ture industry. The 2016 edition of the Show welcomed over 230 exhibitors, including more than 50 Canadian fur- niture manufacturers, and 7,000 par- ticipants and this year’s event looks to be the best ever. For more information of the event: http://www.canadianfurnitureshow. com/


recent products and services as well as numerous technical consider- ations will get utmost priority. This is going to be the largest and most informative international event where innovative ideas will germinate and exhibitors will get ample opportu- nity to showcase their products in front of international community. Canada North Resources Expo will also display independent power products and resolve transporta- tion related queries promptly. This summit will also provide attendees expert opinion through numerous interactive sessions, workshops and plenary talks. Moreover, astounding networking opportunity will certain- ly strengthen the cord of collabora- tion among the professionals in this domain.

May 26 th , 2017

Viscount Gort Hotel- Winnipeg, MB, Canada

This event showcases over 91 exhib- itors in a diverse range of recruit- ment events and free employment services that enable Job Seekers across Canada to discover differ- ent facets of the labour market and learn numerous employment oppor- tunities, career resources and job possibilities that Canadian Organiza- tions have to offer in their particular fields of expertise (employment, edu- cation, career development, immi- gration and training). This is a great opportunity to showcase your busi- ness’s career opportunities or look for your next challenge. For more information of the event: h t t p : // w w w.w bg c a n a d a . c om / aboutus.asp


May 26 th – 28 th , 2017

Place Bonaventure - Montreal, QC, Canada

For more information of the event:

This will be Canada’s first electric and hybrid vehicle show allowing consumers or anyone who wants to see, test, analyze and compare new products and the latest tech- nological innovations in the field of electric mobility.


May 26 th – 28 th , 2017


The International Centre - Toronto, ON, Canada

For more information of the event:

The only national furniture show in the country and one of the top 5 largest trade shows in Canada, it brings together industry profes- sionals, manufacturers, retailers, designers, importers, and suppliers from Canada, the United States and all over the world, to display their latest collections and trends. It is the place where buying decisions are

May 26 th – 27 th , 2017


CN Centre – South Prince George, BC, Canada

May 27 th – 28 th , 2017

With over a 120 exhibitors the Canada North Resources Expo is the most crucial exhibition for the forestry, oil and gas as well as mining and bio mass industry where most

Ottawa Convention Centre - Ottawa, ON, Canada



business critical workshops, build new business relationships and shop from vendors that provide unique products & services to help grow their business. Start-up to a Fortune 500, this is a highly anticipat- ed annual event that every business must attend. For more information of the event: https://www.thesmallbusinessexpo. com/event- view/chicago/

June 6 th – 8 th , 2017

The Ottawa Health and Fitness Expo attracts exhibitors from all over North America as it is the largest of its kind in Canada, featuring over 100 retailers, and attracting over 60,000 people each year. The event show- cases products like Health wellness products, sports apparel, sports shoes, nutrition food products and much more etc. in the Wellness, Health & Fitness industry. For more information of the event: events/tamarack- ottawa-race- weekend/weekend-information/ health- and-fitness- expo

Edmonton Expo Centre - Edmonton, AB, Canada

The Western Manufacturing Technol- ogy Show is a complete manufactur- ing experience that will provide you with the resources and knowledge you need to stay competitive and improve the industry. For the past 30 years WMTS has been the event where the industry’s premier buyers and sellers have come together to meet, share, learn and purchase the very latest products, services and solutions.

For more information of the event:


May 31 st – June 1 st , 2017


EY Centre - Ottawa, ON, Canada

June 9 th - 10 th , 2017

This event which is held annually in Ottawa since 1998 by the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries to showcase leading-edge technology, products and services for land- based, naval, aerospace and joint forces military units. This two-day event is the largest and most important defence industry event in Canada. For more information of the event: CANSEC/

Moncton Coliseum - Moncton, NB, Canada


The 2017 Atlantic Truck Show is the leading trucking event in Atlantic Canada offering a comprehen- sive forum of industry products that attracts people from all over Eastern Canada and puts them face to face with industry specialists. The Atlantic Truck Show is a great place to meet suppliers from the trucking industry that put in a great deal of work to bring their latest products at this one stop market place event. This event welcomed a record-breaking 12,660 key decision makers and buyers in 2015. They’ll be out in full force once again… there’s no better venue to jump-start your sales for 2017 and beyond!

June 2 nd – 4 th , 2017

CobbGalleriaCentre – Atlanta, GA, USA

Expect blade-buying action—with a buying floor stocked with more blades, accessories, tactical gear, customs and famous makers than you’ll see under one roof anywhere. BLADE is also your go-to resource for knife education. Take time out for free demos happening all day long, or save a seat in one of the dozens of expert-led BLADE Uni- versity classes and deepen your knife knowledge. non-stop


June 1 st , 2017

For more information of the event:

UIC Forum – Chicago, IL, USA

This is Chicago's largest Business to Business Trade Show, Conference & Networking Event. bringing together thou- sands of business owners and deci- sion-makers to network, attend

For more information of the event:






There’s nothing better than a good story teller who has the facts – the hard numbers – on the tip of their tongue for that moment when something really sparks their interest. I had a history teacher in high school like that. His side stories were the thing of legend. When I spoke with Erika Jones, the Marketing Manager at Maple Leaf Homes in Fredericton, New Brunswick, in mid-May, I was immediately reminded of those fact-laden detours in the classroom that made every topic come to life. As she detailed the history and current operations of the award winning and industry leading modular housing manufacturer, it was like I was walking alongside her on the factory floor.



By David MacDonald W hen the four founders started this then lit- tle-known business back in 1985, the homes were built within a 7,000 square feet factory in the Fredericton Industrial Park,” she said at a brisk pace. “The original dream was to create factory-built, quality homes for New Brunswickers. Now, 32 years later, Maple Leaf Homes operates out of a 130,000 square feet facility. We’re now a leader in factory-built housing in Atlantic Canada and beyond. We have homes being delivered throughout Atlantic Canada, Ontario, Northern

Canada, and the Eastern United States. This week, actually, we celebrated our 17,000th serial number.”

This mile stone is a point of pride for staff, management and ownership alike, and is the result of very good work by experienced people over several decades. Erika told me with certainty. “We have an amazing team of dedicated and highly skilled workers. We’ve always remained committed to providing jobs for New Brunswickers and providing the very best quality-built homes. Maple Leaf Homes is also committed to safe practice, training, promotion fromwithin, and loyalty. Ranging from 150-300 employees – depend- ing on the time of year – Maple Leaf Homes has a team of





Phone 506.459.5719

Like us on Facebook!



Bill Jones

detail. We are able to combine our talented workers to build more homes simultaneously in a shorter period of time and thus our labour costs are most often lower. This ulti- mately makes for a better built house in a shorter period of time that is more affordable. Every home that we build is pre-sold and custom-built for the buyer. Every kitchen, bathroom, and design is specific to each indi- vidual order. Customers can choose all their colors, their floorplan – even their window coverings.” Maple Leaf Homes offers a variety of styles ready for customization, including bungalow and ranch; Cape Cod, chalet, and classic two-storey designs; split entry; mini homes; con- temporary designs; recreational park models; cottages; as well as multi-unit commercial construction . We offer a lot of spacious and popular options

reliable and committed employees; we even have a few that have been with us since the start and it’s that kind of commitment to our foundation – please excuse the pun – that makes us what and who we are.” “Now, 32 years later, Maple Leaf Homes operates out of a 130,000 square feet facility. We’re now a leader in factory-built housing in Atlantic Canada and beyond.” What and who they are at Maple Leaf Homes is even more thought provoking when you consider that they are a leading edge manufacturer of energy effi- cient homes with a network in excess of 30 independent retailers throughout Canada and the United States. “What we do here in our facility in Frederic- ton is manufacture and ship. Our independent retailers are the ones selling these homes to their individual market places. We have a strong belief in their service commitment to the buyers, those looking for a dream home, wherever that might be,” Erika frankly explained. The majority of all construction, wiring, and plumbing for Maple Leaf Homes is completed indoors at the Fredericton factory. “It is a quality controlled environment,” Erika explained. “Our materials don’t deteriorate, the weather doesn’t affect our productivity, and we have constant supervision of every



well above the 1,000 square feet range but our large mini homes, like our largest mini home which measures 1,184 square feet, will always be very popular options” Erika said. “Our team loves being a partner in that journey.” “We’ve been a first choice for home buyers for so many years because we know how important the decision is to build your dream home, or in some cases dream business,” she continued. “Our team loves being a partner in that journey. Maple Leaf Homes sees every order as an oppor- tunity to create more satisfied customers.”



Putting aside themaintenance free exteriors, premiumbuilding materials, and the limited lifetime warranties on roofing, siding, and windows, Maple Leaf Homes customers can also be satis- fied with what their home represents. Their investment – which is protected up to 10 years under available warranties – isn’t only in their home itself, it’s also in a company whose success has made it possible to share their spirit of home and hearth with those homebuyers that have supported and grown the business since its early beginnings over three decades ago. “We have a strong belief in their service commitment to the buyers, those looking for a dream home, wherever that might be.”

You need fresh air, so does your home.

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“We have been fortunate to be a partner in a few amazing and impactful projects in the last year. In the summer of 2016, we built over 100 units for Kashechewan First Nation in Northern Ontario; this project allowed displaced residents of the flooded area to return to safe new homes with their families. Maple Leaf Homes also completed a project for Liberty Lane, a Fredericton Second Stage Housing facility for women and children who have experienced family violence. Maple Leaf Homes’ involvement in these types of housing projects demonstrates our conviction to be a community leader in citizenship,” Erika told me with purpose in her voice. The Manufactured Housing Association of Atlantic Canada is currently working with all factory-built home builders in the region with the hope of better educating home buyers on the advantages of manufactured housing. “There has been a per- sistent decades-old stigma surrounding modular housing,” Erika explained. “Home buyers hear the term and assume it’s a synonym for mobile home. The fact is, manufacturers have been making luxurious, multi-roomhomes for decades and have come a longwayinthattime.ThepublicperceptioniscatchingupandIthink consumers nowunderstand the valueof amanufacturedhome.

Maple Leaf Homes is a privately ownedNewBrunswick company that prides itself on buying locally and hiring New Brunswickers.

Visit for more information.





Posted by Denise Alison U nderstanding where you are in the business growth process is the first step to developing a plan to grow your business. Stage I: Start-Up During the Start-Up Phase every business grows. After all, you’re starting from zero. In this stage, the focus is on creating products/services, getting custom- ers, and proving the business has a chance to succeed. You will often works insane hours for little pay, but that doesn’t matter: coming to work is fun! Every achievement is celebrated. Many entrepreneurs will tell you that the start-up phase is the most enjoyable part of the business growth cycle. Stage 2: Survival The survival stage is the point when reality sets in. The business is up and running and sales are coming in. Formal planning is minimal and your actions all seem to be reactive, such as finding a way to make the next sale or dealing with unexpected expenses. Cash flow is tight and you are almost always working for less than a fair market wage. The major goal is survival. Many busi- nesses get stuck in this phase, believing that they key to success is finding a way to stick it out. Sadly, a willingness to work hard and live with stress is no assurance that your business will progress to the next stage. Most entrepre- neurs that find themselves stuck in survival mode for an extended period of time will eventually give up and close the business. Every new business must experience the survival stage, but successful entrepreneurs understand the importance of growing the business to the point where they can move on to stage three.

Stage 3: Viable Business This is the stage where you are gener- ating sufficient cash flow to cover the needs of your business and drawing a living wage. (Note that there is a dif- ference between a “living wage” and a “fair market wage”. A living wage is the amount of money you need to take out of the business to support a basic lifestyle). Many entrepreneurs choose to take less than a fair market wage, leaving money in the business to help them achieve something they care about. There is nothing wrong with this, as long as it is a conscious choice. Stage 3 is the time to reassess what you truly want from your business. Some entrepreneurs may be very happy with the business as it is, while others are far from satisfied and want to achieve more with their business. For the latter, continued growth is the priority.





Stage 4: Wealth Creation In order to advance your business to stage 4, you must create wealth in the company. This means that you must generate sufficient revenues to cover all business expenses, pay yourself a fair market wage, and have profits left to re-invest in the business. At this stage, some entrepreneurs will focus energies on maximizing the profit potential of the business and will seek to grow sales through market penetration or market development. Others will decide that now is the time to build upon previous success and pursue aggressive growth strategies that include investments in new infra- structure and product development. In all cases, there needs to be a focus on implementing processes to ensure that the business can carry on, even after the entrepreneur exits the business. Stage 5: Succession Many of the entrepreneurs we meet assume that they will be able to sell their business when the time comes. While this does happen, unless the new owner is in the family, the odds are not in their favour. With the ageing population, there is an almost limit- less supply of businesses available for purchase, with a finite number of potential purchasers. Recent statis- tics suggest that fewer than 15% of all family-owned businesses will tran- sition to a new owner. For the other 85%, assets are sold off, often at a significant discount, and the doors are closed. For some entrepreneurs this was always the plan. For others, it comes as an unfortunate surprise. Planning for succession can some- times influence an entrepreneur’s thought process when the business reaches Stage 3 (a viable business). Now that you understand the stage your business is at, it’s time to develop a strategic growth plan (with tangible action steps) to help guide you towards your goals.

HI. MY NAME IS DENISE ALISON AND I AM OBSESSED WITH HELPING ENTREPRENEURS GROW THEIR BUSINESS AND REACH THEIR POTENTIAL. Let’s face the obvious first: I’m not your typical business coach! Obvious reasons aside, I am a very creative, quirky person, who is not afraid to tell it like it is, and learn from my mistakes along the way! I am putting a new twist on an old idea. While business coaching and consulting used to mean driving all over the place to present work- shops and meet with customers (and charging them an arm and a leg to do so), I’m not interested in that model. (FYI, I live in rural Nova Scotia, so getting anywhere involves a long enough drive). Like most entrepreneurs, I am a risk taker. Stratigro offers all its programs virtually, so there is no need for me or you to travel. We also offer online workshops, free challenges, and tons of free content on our blog! I became a business coach and created Stratigro, because I saw so many entrepreneurs struggle when it comes to running their business, and saw that there was a need for business coaching that was practical, helpful, and FUN. I formerly ran my own market research company. I quickly realized that I loved the feeling of helping entrepreneurs grow their business; helping small business owners was my calling. I didn’t just decide this out of nowhere; I’ve been under the influence of entre- preneurs my entire life!  However, I knew that I didn’t want to go on this new adventure alone, so I called up the person I know who knew the most about business growth: my dad, Tim Alison, a lifelong entrepre- neur and long-time business coach I’ve helped hundreds of entrepre- neurs grow their business and, in some instances, put the fun back in their business! So, if you’re tired of spinning your wheels with strategies that just don’t work, from people who don’t get you or your business, I am here to help.






By Jamie Barrie T here are those who say they are surprised, but is anyone really? The inevitable as happened. The dragon stopped breathing fire and is now nothing but a puff of smoke in the leadership race for the Federal Conservative party. The Kevin O’Leary experiment is offi- cially over.

easily it became clear to O’Leary the math just wasn’t going to work on this deal. When O’Leary started his venture to become leader all eyes were pointed south as President Donald Trump was doing the unthinkable. Numerous political commentators were suggesting O’Leary was the Canuck version of “the Donald”, an out- spoken businessman, with just the right mix of spending and negotiating to restart a stagnant economy. It worked

Despite his predictions that he would take the leadership



for Donald Trump, but not for the Dragon’s Den star.

Both are now suggesting it was just “politics”. Last month O’Leary was accusing Bernier’s campaign of membership fraud. The response by Bernier was that Kevin O’Leary is nothing but “a loser” who likes to spin things and throw mud around. In his opinion, Millennials are not getting the opportunities they were promised. All that has changed. “He’s a winner,” Bernier said when taken to task about his earlier comments. O’Leary stated, “I love politics”. There was also a considerable difference in the tone of the policy interpretation between the two after O’Leary’s exit embracing Bernier’s much-discussed support for dismantling Canada’s supply management system for dairy and poultry. O’Leary went as far as saying Bernier was the “candidate that best mirrors my policies.” “I’m totally committed to finishing the job. I want Trudeau gone,” O’Leary vowed as he pledged to use his “massive social media platform” to reach young people and convince them not to vote for Justin Trudeau again. In his opinion, Millennials are not getting the opportunities they were promised. The next Conservative leader will be announced on May 27, but it will not be O’Leary in the running as we have heard the all too familiar saying, “I am out” by Mr. Wonderful.

Some analysts suggest poll numbers showing O’Leary tanking in French Canada had a lot to do with his decision to step down. O’Leary admits his 12% of the membership vote in Quebec would not deliver what he feels will be the 30 seats needed to upset Prime Minister Trudeau in the next election. “Look at how many times Quebec has determined the federal outcome of elections in this country,” O’Leary said. “It is the Florida of Canada.” That might be a premature statement considering Stephen Harper won a majority government in 2011 with only five seats in Quebec. O’Leary has made many statements suggesting his efforts in Quebec have been overlooked. Recently he advocated stated he worked very hard to win a path to Ottawa by enticing Quebec voters with his policies. However, those voters would have been just Conservatives choosing a leader. In a general election, he would be far less likely to hold the popular vote. One analyst expressed, “in one breath he talks about how hard he worked in Quebec and then moments later he was talking about being on CNBC in New York.” O’Leary was also criticized for continuing to fund raise even after he announced his intention to leave the race. “The fundraising will continue. It will continue,” O’Leary said. The multimillionaire stated he still has campaign bills to pay off so he doesn’t think his continued fund raising is inappropriate.

O’Leary was quick to throw his support behind arch rival Maxine Bernier. The two have never really gotten along.



By Katie Davis L iquor authorities in Canada are recall- ing 1,000 cases worth of 1.14-litre bottles of Bombay Sapphire gin across Canada for containing too much alcohol as some bottles may contain almost twice as much alcohol as claimed on the bottle. The Liquor Control BoardOf Ontariowas the first to issue a recall after its internal quality assurance team discovered that some bottles of Bermuda-based alcohol con- glomerate Bacardi and Bombay Sapphire London Dry Gin had not been properly diluted, resulting in an alcohol content of 77 percent, not 40 percent as listed on the bottle. Bacardi who owns Bombay Sapphire along with other brands including Grey Goose vodka and Dewar’s whisky advised that the mistake happened when some bottles “inadvertently entered the bottling line during a short period of time (max 45 minutes) when they were switching from one bottling tank to another bottling tank” All the bottles affected by this mishap were bound for the Canadian market and it is only the 1.14-litre bottles of the product and they all have a product code of L16304 on the bottle and have been pulled off the store shelves. However, some have already been purchased and for customers that have pur- chased one, it is being advised to return it to the place of purchase for a refund. Bacardi also advised that,”We do not recommend consumption of this product.” Good news is that according to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency there have been no reported illnesses associated with the consumption of this product.



By Kate Davis W hole Foods is known for offering a wide selection of high-quality and specialty foods. Unfortunately, they have had to fight the reputation that their prices are higher than Safeway or Sobeys. Now this is not saying that items at Whole Foods are necessarily over- priced: Higher quality, better service and shopping experi- ence do come at a cost. However, finding what that cost is and being able to brand it in a marketing strategy is a tough sell. So that is why Whole Foods is taking a page out of the Wal-Mart book and looking to work to lower its prices. Bring prices down, and losing the “Whole Paycheque” rep- utation and nickname means Whole Foods needs to cut costs by operating more like a big-box grocer, cutting down on the number of items offered to shoppers and focusing on national distributors offering better price margins over local products. This of course is a major change for Whole Foods as its focus on local products has been a major

selling point of the brand with shoppers heading there for local products that they are unable to get at traditional grocery stores. Whole Foods Co-founder and CEO, John Mackey has been very clear that changes to the brand will need to strike the right balance with their customers. “Our culture is still very unique,” he was quoted as saying. “What Whole Foods needs to do is to take the best ideas of the tradi- tional supermarket industry and integrate them into our company.” Mackey later added,

“We think there are tremendous savings we can have that we can pass on to our customers with lower prices.”

Whole Foods is up to the challenge to change its image and price points, it will be interesting to see if that will get more people in the isles or force them to other local markets for products.





By Katie Davis W e speak with hundreds of CEOs and Managers each month and ask their secrets to success and if every case having great employees is the reason that they continue to be leaders in the industry that they are the lifeline for a company and the most valuable resource that determines success or failure of any business, large or small. An effective and well skilled workforce can efficiently achieve a company’s goals and vision however, an inefficient workforce can turn out to be a huge liability for the organization. Therefore, it is essential for any company to develop their employees’ skills and enable them to contribute their best efforts in the pursuit of company’s business plans and targeted goals. This is what we have been told are the four key techniques to develop your employees skills to achieve an effective and progressive workforce: INDIVIDUAL AND PERSONALIZED DEVELOPMENT PLANS Your company’s workforce is made up of employees that have their own way of learning and their own unique skills set, each with strengths and areas of opportunity. It is important to have general training on policy and proce- dures when creating employee training and organizational developmental programs, but you must understand the diversity of your workforce. By developing personalized development plans tailored to the specific needs of each individual employee. This will help make your company identify the professional goals and career aspirations of your employees and develop each employees career path as per their skills and growth expectations. DEVELOP KEY PERFORMANCE METRICS Your company must create a quantitative approach to work, tasks and goals is an effective strategy to quantify your system of performance evaluation. Having specific goals related to ones performance will develop an under- standing among your employees about what the company expects from them and how much they have to deliver in terms of productivity and efficiency in order to make it to their respective goals. Establishing key performance objectives and tying them with specific, quan- tified target is a smart technique to develop your employees and create a healthy competitive culture at the workplace. EXPAND THEIR ROLE OUTSIDE THEIR COMFORT ZONE When developing employees it is important to assign them the tasks based on their own specific skills as this will give them the opportunity to become an expert in that area and not everyone in the company will want to move to the top. However for those employees that want to advance, you want to prepare these employees for more diverse and larger job roles. You will need them to understand that as they move up the company ladder that they will need an awareness and understanding of various tasks and oper- ations being performed within the company.

Key parts to this are internal hiring - whenever possible, job rotations and creating integrated teams of employ- ees for special projects which is a key strategy to develop the skill sets of your employees and prepare them for the more senior roles and posi- tions in the company. It is essential for any company to develop their employees’ skills and enable them to contribute their best efforts in the pursuit of company’s business plans and targeted goals. CONSTRUCTIVE FEEDBACK This is the most important of the four key techniques of the development of your employees and your company’s workforce. You must keep track of the progress in the development of each employee, not just the company as a whole. Plus not only do you need to document the development, you need to be providing regular feedback to your employees, both positive and constructive to ensure that the employees maintain their efficiency and perform their assigned job roles to the best of their ability. Make sure that you acknowledge the efforts of your employees, appreci- ate the accomplishments and make the recommendations where you think there is room for improvement and do not forget to ask them how you are doing to help them develop. Feedback needs to be open and honest and 360 degrees. Once all parties give their feedback, then it is time to go back through the steps and repeat as this will now be the expected culture to grow your employees and the business.



By Katie Davis N ow that the sun is out and the weather is warming up it is great to be spending time with friends on the patio again and having meaningful conversations of your favorite rub for the BBQ or smoker, the latest craft beer that you are hooked on or how to store your winter equipment in the shed. I know that last one just came out of nowhere didn’t it, that is what I thought at a recent gath- ering of friends when the topic took over and it seemed that everyone has their ideas and were more than willing to share their secrets and opinions. So I listened and then I thought that I would do a little research of my own with some of the experts, none of which were on the patio that day, to see what we should be doing to make sure that we take care of our winter equipment so when we are looking to use it again that it is ready to get back into action. I found from speaking with experts these are the steps that you should follow when storing your winter equip- ment properly in the spring and by following these tips prevent problems in the following fall and winter, plus keep your equipment running strong for years to come. Two things first: 1) Always consult your owner’s manual or retailer to follow any manufactures guidelines that they might have for warranty purposes. 2) Before performing maintenance on any unit, always dis- connect and ground the spark plug wire, I will not tell how I found this out, but I will tell you that it is important and we will leave it at that.



10 WINTER EQUIPMENT STORAGE TIPS 1 ) Drain gas tank and crankcase oil. Remember it is important to recycle the oil properly. 2) Add the proper amount and grade of new motor oil. Remember to refer to owner’s manual. 3) Always purchase new fuel, do not keep leftover fuel in the tank. Make sure you treat the new fuel with a fuel stabilizer and fill tank. Fuel stabilizers help to prevent gumming in the fuel delivery system. 4) Make sure that you run the engine for a short time to circulate the additive through the carburetor. Engines with treated fuel can be stored for up to 18 months however, remember to refer to owner’s manual for your specific machine and to be honest you will have it out to throw snow long before that. 5) Remove the spark plug and pour about 1/2 ounce (15 ml) of engine oil into the cylinder. Slowly pull starter cord through several times to crank engine and distribute the oil within the cylinder. It is important to replace spark plug however, remember to store the unit with spark plug wire disconnected. 6) Now if your machine has an electric starter, with the spark plug wire disconnected, plug in electric starter and spin starter for 20 seconds to help eliminate internal moisture. 7) Lubricate all lubrication points as instructed in your owner’s manual. It is recommended to wipe the entire unit with a lightly oiled rag to protect surfaces.

Remember to refer to owner’s manual. 8) Store snow thrower or other pieces of winter equipment in a clean, dry area.

Remember to not store near a stove, furnace or water heater or any other item that uses a pilot light or any device that can create a spark. Plus remember to never store your winter equipment next to corrosive materials, such as fertilizer. 9) Tires, especially pneumatic tires, should be isolated from concrete floors. This does not mean you have to have your winter machine on a jack like when storing your car in the winter, but by placing a rubber mat between the floor and the tire tread. 10 ) If your winter equipment has a battery; then remove it and make sure that it is fully charged and ready to be put back in the unit when the snow flies.

Well I hope this helps you out or at the very least will allow you to jump in on the next patio party conversation, just in case BBQ’s and Craft Beer are not your thing.



How many busy brothers does it take to build a better beehive? It depends of which Manzer brother you ask. Brian and Owen Manzer are the brains behind the E-Z Hive, a modified top bar beehive that has caught the attention of researchers and hobby beekeepers alike. When Brian spoke with Spotlight on Business Magazine in May, I couldn’t help noticing that the origin story of the E-Z hive and Manzer Apiary Inc. in Digby, Nova Scotia shares a distinct similarity with a famous page in the history of science.





By David MacDonald I t is likely that Isaac Newton exaggerated that whole apple story. Or at least history has. There is no evidence in his personal writings to suggest that he ever came under attack from falling apples, but it is enduringly amusing that the man responsible for making us all learn those formulas in school took a ripe Flower of Kent apple to the noggin. It was a young friend of Newton’s, William Stukeley, who included the now famous account in a posthumous biog- raphy. “He assumed the problem was the type of hive he was using, so he decided to do some research.” The Manzer’s story invokes Newton’s in perhaps setting alone, but it wonderfully sets up the scene of a knowl- edge-based start-up success story – one that has the potential to make a positive global impact (not to mention an impact on Digby County’s future). “Manzer Apiary Inc. was formally established in 2015, but the whole idea for the E-Z Hive began 8 years prior. My brother Owen – who is also my business partner – decided to keep bees to pollinate his hobby plum orchard. His greatest challenge seemed to be keeping the bees alive, especial- ly when it came to overwintering them. He assumed the problem was the type of hive he was using, so he decided to do some research. He researched the top bar model –I believe, the oldest types of artificial beehive – and began making modifications. This is how the prototype was born,” he explained. Brian worked closely with Owen on design for the better part of a decade before the brothers entered their inno- vative beehive in Innovacorp’s I-3 Technology Start-Up Competition in 2015. They placed second in Zone 3 (Digby, Annapolis, Kings and Hants Counties), taking home a cool $25,000 in cash $15,000 in support and services. “We have just completed a year of field trials which were conducted by Acadia University and the results were very positive.” The interest shown in the E-Z Hive is not at all surprising to the matter-of- fact Manzers. “Bee mortality seems to be on the rise wherever you look,” Brian said. And that’s not good considering that pollinators like bees make possible every one in three bites of food consumed. The gravity of this situation – Newton aside – has created two distinct markets that Manzer Apiary serves with their beehives: The commercial pollination industry and organic garden hobbyists. But the brothers didn’t rest on their laurels.



ing by people that at one time were prominent beekeepers, mainly because of the ease of use. There’s no heavy lifting and the overall design has made beekeeping become interesting again. We have had overwhelming interest from novice beekeepers who thought beekeeping was dif- ficult until they researched this beehive. Many have taken up the hobby for various reasons: to pollinate their small fruit orchard, to have natural honey and beeswax, or just to assist in creating bee life. We are seeing a shift by many individuals to producing their own food source as opposed to market shopping and the bee is the basis of food growth. This beehive is a perfect fit for this type of operation.”  As their tenure in research and development attests, the Manzer brothers are proponents of informed actions. “If you are a novice beekeeper or are thinking of becoming a backyard beekeeper, we’d certainly suggest that you research the art of beekeeping. We have offered training sessions on the use and operation of our modified top bar beehive. For a beginner, this is the easiest beehive to train on and to operate. We encourage everyone to become a beekeeper today. After the end of July it’s too late to load a new hive for the season,” Brian explained.

“The E-Z Hive is, as the name suggests, the easiest beehive on the market today to manage and operate. What’s most important is that it’s a sustainable and manageable home for the bees. It has an observation window on the side where the bees can be monitored without opening the beehive and this lessens the stress on the bee colony. There is also a unique ventilation system that we have installed that allows the bees to control the humidity in the beehive. The venti- lation holes on the top and the entrance holes are covered by sliding screens which the bees will cover with wax when they get cold but remove when they need more air. The insulated cover is hinged, making it very easy to access and there are no heavy parts to lift. What’s more, this beehive is designed to overwinter outside naturally. “We’ve also developed a smaller version of the E-Z- Hive to service the commercial pollination industry.” This removes the need to store hive parts. The success I’ve personally experienced and its success in controlled trials in overwintering will make this beehive a leader in sustain- ing bee life. I haven’t lost a colony since I perfected the design.” “We’ve also developed a smaller version of the E-Z- Hive to service the commercial pollination industry. This little guy is the same as the original beehive only smaller and easier to move from orchard to orchard. We call it the PolliPod. This beehive can also be used as a backyard starter hive, too.” In Nova Scotia, the Bee Industry Act and Regulations, as well as a host of local bylaws, have made beekeeping and hobby beekeeping easier in response to rising bee mor- tality. If you are thinking you might want to see what all the buzz is about, know that you are not alone. The E-Z Hive goes for $650 CDN ($483 USD) and 2017 sales are looking good, according to Brian.

“So if you are thinking of becoming a beekeeper, please start today and help save our precious partner.”

Visit for more information.

“With the E-Z Hive we have seen a move back to beekeep-



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