When Janine Favreau opened her Nutters location 36 years ago, it was in the middle of an October snowstorm.
The less than desirable weather, though, didn’t stop anyone from joining in the festivities.
“We got such a great first-day opening turnout,” Favreau said.
“It was incredible. From that day forward, the City of Prince Albert and the community has fully supported me.”
While Prince Albert remained dedicated to Favreau, Favreau remained dedicated to Prince Albert. On Tuesday that dedication was rewarded when Favreau was named the 2020 recipient of the Prince Albert and District Chamber of Commerce Legacy Award.
“It’s a real honour, totally unexpected,” Favreau said of being named the 2020 recipient. “I’m very appreciative.”
Favreau joins past recipients such as Roses Stewart, Wayne Hansen and the Horn family.
Chamber of Commerce CEO Elise Hildebrandt got to call Favreau to share the news.
“She was absolutely thrilled,” Hildebrandt said.
“She said you never have a business open with the thought that this is where you want to get, but she said it was sure nice to be recognized and seen as having made a difference within the community. It was a good phone call to make.”
The legacy award is designed to recognize pioneers in business within the community and those who have made an impact.
“Thirty-six years in business definitely makes an impact within the community,” Hildebrandt said.
“She’s had a large number of staff members that she has trained and worked with. She’s had a large effect on anybody … who is part of the health community to know that there has been that consistency and company hat you can always come back to.”
Favreau’s store was one of the first wave of Nutters franchises to open in 1984, the same year the store began franchising. She has since become the longest-serving franchisee.
Favreau is no stranger to chamber of commerce awards. She’s won Samuel McLeod Business Awards before, including taking home the 2013 award for Female Business of the Year.
Hildebrandt can see why. Even before coming to Prince Albert, she knew about Favreau and Nutters.
“For myself and your family, you go in and there’s always knowledge on so many things,” the said.
“My family is not from Prince Albert, but coming through to go to the lake, (we’ve) really appreciated that. (Nutters) always has a solution or thoughts as to how they can help you.”
Hildebrandt said that when Favreau’s name was put forward, there was no hesitation on the part of the Chamber committee.
“She has been here for 36 years. That’s a long time to be in one community. She has expanded her space and her customer service is beyond belief,” Hildebrandt said.
“They do an amazing job. The steadiness of her remaining a part of the community through all of that time — (the committee) felt she was very well deserving of the award.”
Favreau said her store first opened as a traditional bulk food store before evolving to also include natural foods, vitamins and herbs.
Favreau will be honoured at the Chamber of Commerce Legacy Lunch, set for March 6 at 11 a.m. at the Coronet Hotel. She’ll also be recognized at the annual Samuel McLeod Business Awards, set for April 2. The finalists for this year’s awards will be announced during the March 6 lunch.
Favreau explained why it’s so important to support local and small businesses.
“Small business is the backbone,” she said “It employs a lot of our community. We can still offer that personal service. I feel so fortunate to have done business in Prince Albert.”