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Staff development backed for N.L. bakery firm

An eastern Newfoundland bakery company that recently boosted production to supply retailer Loblaws has picked up provincial funding to train new staff and rework its product labelling.

Chatman’s Bakery, based at Charlottetown, N.L., within Terra Nova National Park about 90 km southeast of Gander, will get a $170,000 investment from the province.

A contract to distribute Chatman’s products to Loblaws stores across Atlantic Canada has led to increased production activity at Charlottetown, the province said.

The funds will allow new staff will get training in the company’s operating procedures and allow the company to introduce new labeling and packaging materials that meet industry regulations.

Founded by Jean Chatman in 1979 and now managed by her daughters, the company was first set up to make and sell baked goods such as cookies, squares, pies and breads to campers and other visitors to the Terra Nova park.

“Moving from a local to national supplier is a great achievement in the progression of Chatman’s Bakery,” Innovation, Trade and Rural Development Ministrer Susan Sullivan said in a release Wednesday.

“It is no small undertaking for a company to broaden its scope and secure export opportunities while managing increased production requirements and maintaining the product’s high standards.”

The firm’s recent success, Sullivan said, “speaks to the value of participating in industry trade shows and exhibitions to develop important relationships with key decision makers.”

The province’s funding will flow from its Workplace Skills Enhancement Program and Business Market and Development Program.

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