bespoke butchers toronto

Toronto butcher shop is selling meat for zero profit to help the restaurant industry

A Toronto butcher has announced that, in order to prop up the city's hard-hit restaurant industry, it'll be providing wholesale to local businesses for significantly cheaper prices. 

Bespoke Butchers, a popular specialty supplier in Toronto for locally-sourced meats, says it's forgoing all profits associated with wholesale "until restaurants are back on sure footing." 

The company (which has three retail locations in the city) has recently announced it's now offering orders to both small and large businesses at cost. 

What that means for restaurant owners is an average price reduction of about 18 to 23 per cent, says Bespoke Butcher's CEO, Ivan Waissbluth. 

"We think this is a big deal given food costs represent anywhere between 25-40 per cent of the total operating costs of restaurants." 

Bespoke has supplied a number of Toronto restaurants like Bar Isabel, Jacobs & Co. Steakhouse, and The Chase, and typically the company's profit margins differ per wholesale order, said Waissbluth. 

With this new model, Bespoke makes zero profit on every order, and restaurants pay at cost for the butcher's list of locally-sourced and sustainable products. 

The minimum order is $250, and there's a $6 delivery fee attached, but Waissbluth says that companies of all sizes will get the same price sheet and receive the full discount as a gesture of transparency.

Beyond that, he says the company is willing to swallow the costs to help the fragile supply chain that connects Canadian business owners and farmers who align with cruelty-free and sustainable animal husbandry.

"...A big reason for forgoing all profits is to drive volume that we hope will maintain the supply chains we have worked so hard to build," said Waissbluth.

"These supply chains allow Toronto restaurants to order meat from local farmers that prioritize animal welfare, raise animals on pasture and are dedicated to long-term sustainability." 

It's unclear exactly how long it will take to get the city's restaurant industry out of dire straits, so Bespoke will be continuing the at-cost wholesale model for another four months at least. 

Lead photo by

Bespoke Butchers


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