from L to R: Klaus Allerdissen, Director of Finance; Huguette Barbot, Director of Operations; Mike Scholtens, Director
Started by 5 local Victoria residents, Mother Nature’s Market and Deli was conceptualized in November 2011. After 10 months of extremely hard work, dedication and a whole lot of positive energy, the store opened its doors August 9, 2012.
Hello. My name is Huguette Barbot and I am the Store Manager and a partner in this venture. Originally from Quebec, I returned to Canada four years ago after having lived in Miami for 10 years. Victoria has been home to my husband, two children and me since 2008.
In Quebec, I worked in a grocery store for eight years, starting as a cashier and working my way up to Assistant Store Manager. When I moved to Miami, I worked in a fine dining French restaurant, managing the dining room as well as the kitchen. Upon my return to Canada, I worked for Planet Organic Market and here I am, now, in this new adventure.
With my French background, I like my “French Classic” (naturally) and I am a big fan of fish and seafood. I enjoy traveling and love to learn, feel and touch the history of the countries I visit.
I hope that Mother Nature's Market and Deli will always be part of the community in which it is located. I wish to see it grow and to be seen as the neighbourhood store.
Hello. My name is Klaus and I am 59 years old. I am a partner and a shareholder in Mother Nature’s Market and Deli. We first visited BC in 1983 and instantly fell in love with Victoria – it was so beautiful; rich in nature, culture and spirit. My family moved from Cologne, Germany to Victoria in September 2010. My spouse, Cora, was born in Rio de Janeiro and we have twin boys; Björn and Martin, who are 7 years old and attend Glenlyon Norfolk School. We enjoy being here on the Island. People are really friendly and open minded so it was easy to establish our family here.
I feel very lucky to have found such amazing partners and a strong Management team to found Mother Nature’s Market and Deli. I am really excited about the spirit and entrepreneurship of all the partners. It is the desire of all of the partners to provide customers with healthy and natural foods.
I worked in the finance industry for more than 25 years. In my original profession I worked as an actuary, solving problems in business by analyzing and managing risk. I was Member of the Board of the German Actuarial Society and I worked as a Board Member of an international operating Insurance Group and as a CEO. One of the strengths I bring to Mother Nature’s Market and Deli is my ability to help and to support the founding processes of our company using my experience as a manager.
I hold a Masters Degree in Mathematics and Physics and am currently enrolled in Germanic Studies at UVIC. My favorite areas of study are Literature, Philosophy and Politics. It is a real challenge for me to look at my home culture from an international perspective.
I have started to play piano but, honestly speaking, I am a beginner; nevertheless, it is a passion that I enjoy, especially in the evenings.
I enjoy foods from Mediterranean countries; especially, those prepared in a light and healthy style. The taste of Provencal vegetables is to me “the pleasure of life” and dinner provides the perfect chance to talk with people and to socialize.
I am passionate about my family - without my family I cannot imagine being happy.
My hopes for Mother Nature’s Market and Deli are to create a business in line with the need of all of us to live in a healthy way. I really hope that we can offer to our customers’ fair trade products at reasonable prices to ensure that healthy food is available to all of us.
Hello. My name is Mike Scholtens and I am the Deli Manager. I am one of five partners in Mother Nature’s Market and Deli.
I was raised on dairy farm in Duncan where I worked with my family for five years after graduating from high school. I have lived in Victoria since 1993 and I am married with eleven kids (that is, cats).
I started my career in the restaurant industry and worked my way up to the title of Sous Chef. I moved out of restaurants and into retail six years ago. Until my adventure began with Mother Nature’s Market and Deli, I was fortunate to have managed the deli and kitchen at Planet Organic Market.
My favourite pastime is spending time at home in the garden as well as camping, kayaking and listening to my vast Duran Duran collection. I also enjoy my volunteer work with Dee’s Kitten Orphan Fund.
I like all kinds of foods, but I would have to say that my favourite food is CHOCOLATE and a good BBQ steak or burger.
My passion is food and I like to make food for people to enjoy; both at home and at work - I take pride in making the best. I look forward to meeting you at the store.
Hi. My name is Brenda Tobin and I am a partner [extraordinaire] in Mother Nature’s Market and Deli.
I met my husband, Keith, a Brit, in Australia in 2003. We had our first son, Kai, in 2005, followed by our oh-so-charming and stubborn second child, Rocco, who was born in 2007.
Although I do not have a history in grocery retail my history in customer service is long. I come from 18 years of the serving industry at the James Bay Inn. I will always hold a special love for that place!
My favourite pastime is to spend time with family and friends and host dinner parties for my loved ones. I also enjoy gardening; dahlias are my absolute favourite. I love going out for Thai food and tapas and eating Mother Nature’s granola: From the Ground Up (still in the testing phase).
I am passionate about my friends, my family and traveling. My next destination will be France where I plan to enjoy much wine and lots of cheese with my good friend, Areli.
My hope is that the store becomes firmly planted in the Cook Street Village Community and I look forward to helping it grow. In addition to my Office Manager duties, I will be training as one of in-store Healthy Living Specialists and look forward to seeing you in the store.
Hello. My name is Craig Hermanson and I am a shareholder in the company. I moved to Victoria from North Vancouver in 1982 with my family and met my wife, Areli, in 2001. We have two boys, named busy and busier.
I worked for Save On Foods for nearly 20 years before our first son, Benjamin, was born in November 2007. After his birth, I took 3 ½ years off to be an at-home dad. When it was time for me to go back to work, I was fortunate to work with Planet Organic Market, where I further learned about the natural foods industry and I met Huguette and Mike. I worked at Planet Organic Market for a little over a year before the opportunity came up to open our own store and we jumped at the chance. Our second son, William was born in January 2012.
I really enjoy hiking; especially in the hills of Sooke and Metchosin, granted I haven’t had much time for it lately! I also enjoy construction, building dry-laid rock walls, gardening and spending time with my family.
My favourite food: blueberries, hands down. A close second would be sushi. My wife; however, would say that my favourite food is “everything… and lots of it”.
I am passionate about working from a place of integrity. I truly believe in Mother Nature’s Market and Deli; our Vision, Mission and Goals and my hopes for the store come out of that.
I look forward to meeting you at the store and will do everything I can to make every shopping experience at Mother Nature’s Market and Deli a positive one.