Josh Pen­ner

BC Business Magazine - - Entrepreneur Of The Year 2018 - –J.W.


When Josh Pen­ner's fa­ther, Dar­rell, de­cided he was ready to sell his Port Co­quit­lam meat and seafood shop in 1996, lit­tle did he ex­pect his el­der son to make an of­fer. But Pen­ner, who stud­ied mar­ket­ing at BCIT and trained in meat cut­ting, had started man­ag­ing the store and was armed with a vi­sion.

With his wife, brother and brother-in-law, he added three new shops to Merid­ian Meats & Seafood, fo­cus­ing on lo­ca­tions next to green­gro­cers in Maple Ridge and Lan­g­ley. His next move, to ex­pand into other fresh foods, was in­spired by a frus­trat­ing su­per­mar­ket visit. “I had to walk 50 me­tres to go find the milk, 30 me­tres to find a loaf of bread and then line up,” Pen­ner re­calls. “It was a 25-minute visit just to buy a cou­ple of things.”

Pen­ner launched Merid­ian Farm Mar­kets, con­vert­ing the Maple Ridge meat and seafood store and build­ing two more in North Van­cou­ver and Tsawwassen. To­day, 200 em­ploy­ees work at those three lo­ca­tions and at three Merid­ian Meats & Seafood shops in White Rock, Lan­g­ley and Port Co­quit­lam. In Novem­ber, Pen­ner will open a fourth Farm Mar­ket, in Mis­sion.

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