When Vladimir Gonzalez first came to Canada 18 years ago, no one knew that one day this chemical engineer would end up starting Maxi Foods, a food company that creates organic, dairy, and gluten-free Mexican food! When he landed in Toronto all those years ago the first thing he noticed is that the Mexican food available didn't taste like the Southern Mexican food he grew up on. He spent years thinking about the tastes from home and how in Canada, guacamole had tomatoes and the tortillas tended to break. Five years ago, when he was laid off from his job in the Alberta oil sector, he decided to do something about it, and Maxi Foods was born.
Vladimir has always been interested in food, and it’s not surprising as food is central to Mexican culture. UNESCO listed the cuisine of Mexico as a Cultural Intangible Heritage in 2010, recognizing it for its traditional dishes, ingredients, and cooking practices. Vladimir grew up in Mexico City but spent summers at his various uncles’ farms in the south, watching how they made food from fresh, simple ingredients as they grew corn, vegetables, and raised animals.
It is this way of cooking that led Vladimir to develop his organic corn tortillas, tortilla chips, creams, and sauces including gluten and dairy-free options. Maxi Foods does not add any preservatives to its foods, producing the most simple and natural products available. If you try them, you’ll find this means the tortillas and chips need to be refrigerated and don’t break as easily as most mass-produced options. Whenever possible Vladimir likes to use ingredients grown locally, often sourcing his cilantro from BC and his tomatoes and onions from Alberta.
First Time’s the Charm
After taking the time to perfect his mother’s and grandmother’s recipes and making a few tweaks, (originally his salsa was too spicy for Canadians) he decided to debut his new venture at the Airdrie Farmers Market. He was nervous as he set up his tables and unsure if he had brought too much. But he shouldn’t have worried; within a busy two hours, he had sold out of everything! Maxi Foods products are now sold at Farmer’s Markets and grocery stores across Alberta but Vladimir is especially excited to be teaming up with CultivatR to bring his delicious, quality Mexican foods to even more families and providing options for those looking for organic, non-GMO, gluten-free and dairy-free Mexican food.
To make a quality plate of authentic nachos take Maxi Foods Organic Corn Chips and add a can of black beans. Then add their Guacamole mixed with their Pico de Gallo Salsa, sprinkle on some cheese, and after a few minutes in a pre-warmed oven, you have a great party snack!
LOCAL GUACAMOLE | 250G
LOCAL PICO DE GALLO | 300G
LOCAL SALSA VERDE | 300G