When Jennifer Just moved to Squamish nine years ago, she quickly realized that helping others eat healthily was her calling in life. She describes the experience as “eye-opening,” recalling, “learning about the impact of food on our bodies, on the environment... it was a revelation.”
Just attended school to become a certified holistic nutritionist. She knew she wanted to change lives – but on her terms. Just didn't want to be resigned to a back office, only seeing clients in a clinical setting. She knew that she wanted to own a cafe, where she could provide people with good food their bodies needed on an immediate basis. So for two years, she worked with the Green Moustache in Whistler, hoping to learn from the whole-food and organic based philosophy behind their cafe.
In 2016, Just was given the opportunity to run the first franchise of the Green Moustache Cafe in Squamish. She and her team delight in the ability to offer healthy food to people who might not be able to eat out anywhere else: "Everything is made in house," she says, which allows her team to have control over quality like no other establishment. "We are a 100% organic, plant-based, whole food café from our juices to our food and desserts. There's nothing processed or from a can. We use 100% local ingredients when we can, everything gluten-free and plant-based."
Her customers range from athletes to parents wanting to help their kids' development, to the chronically ill. She says a lot more people have food allergies than they may realize. "People are just becoming more aware of what hurts their bodies. People feel less like their body is using a lot of energy to process what they just ate - heavy, sluggish, tired - as opposed to feeling lighter and like they got a boost."
Just takes pride in making food that is delicious as well as nutritious, adding that her cafe has been offering workshops to help people learn to make fresh treats on their own. They've also begun offering meal plans, for people who want to eat healthily but don't want to do the prep work. All in all, Just says, "It's going really well. it's crazy how many people we get thanking us for giving them energy again."
If you want to find out more about Jennifer Just and the Green Moustache, check their website.