JUCIERY & CAFE
Fresh pressed organic juices, creamy acai bowls, handmade almond milk lattes – these are just a few of the many delicious items you can find at Glory Juice Co cafes scattered throughout Vancouver. On a beautiful February 2nd afternoon, I chatted with Caroline Nybo, Glory’s Retail & Wholesale Operations Manager. She gives me the whole scoop on juice cleanses, sustainability initiatives and everything else you need to know about Glory! Interview below.
Locations: West 4th, MacDonald, Olympic Village (Vancouver, BC)
Me: How was Glory created?
Caroline: There are four founders for Glory. One was a chef. The other one was a guy who – was actually going to law school at the time – but was a really healthy eater. Him and his wife are gluten free, dairy free, and all those similar guidelines. He was very interested in building a business [based] on wellness. So the two of them, Jen and Ben, looked for two other partners that could get involved. People that could take their vision and grow it. So the first Glory was open back in January 2013. It was just a little shop up on Dunbar. It had all the juicing and the food being made in one place – with a little shop in front. For the first year, that is how it operated. Then two investors came on board and helped expand it. So they open the West 4th store about a year later. Then our location in Olympic Village a few months after that.
Me: It is amazing how fast Glory flourished. Do you think the ‘Vancouvrite’ lifestyle has been a large contributor to your success? That being, people prefer your store over a fast food chain per say.
Caroline: I think Vancouverite’s are definitely willing to invest in their health. They definitely put health on the top of their list of things they want to spend disposable income on. I see people really valuing what it does to them – the nutritional components. I also see their lifestyles also require them to eat better. We are so active here, outside, that I think it goes hand-in-hand. They need the nutrition to keep up their active lifestyles. It was a natural fit for this community. Especially here in Kits where everyone is really grounded in nutrition, health and wellness.
Me: Has Glory had a vision or goal since day one?
Caroline: Making nutrition accessible is really our goal. When we think about a lot of [healthy] food restaurants that have been created in the past, they’re really that one location that you have to drive to get to. They may only have two [locations] at most – that they expand into. What we see, is there is no real franchise that has made getting nutritional organic healthy food accessible everywhere. Our goal and our vision, is that we can have Glory’s accessible to all people in all communities.
Me: When you walk into Glory, what products can you find?
Caroline: First and foremost, we are a juice company – so we have cold-pressed, organic, non-pasteurized juice in bottles. We have about nine different recipes at any given time based on seasonality. We also make our own homemade almond milk – which is a great dairy alternative for people. We make different flavours in that as well. It can be used in coffees, cereals and all sorts of enjoyable non-dairy things. We also do a range of shakes which have really high quality plant-based protein in them. You’ll be able to find something that is almost a meal-replacement but it is still gluten-free, dairy-free, organic and plant based – in a multitude of flavours as well. We also do some cool unique pieces too; like acai bowls are featured on our menu. You know, a lot of people come far to get acai bowls… Once you’ve had them, you get kind of addicted! Acai berry is really high in antioxidants but it turns into this really sherbet like consistency. They we put our granola, that we make from scratch from almond pulp, on top of it. So it is a really nice treat – real refreshing and real satisfying. Then you will also find our homemade soups and salads that we do. You can really get a variety of breakfast, lunch, snacks, shakes, juices… it’s a full menu.
Me: Now you said seasonal juices… that would be only fruits and veggies that are currently in season?
Caroline: Ya! So when we see a fruit or veggie come into season, we want to make the most of it. Whether it is in the summertime when pears come into season, we will have more a variety of pear options [at that time]. But in the winter, [pears] are really hard to get… Versus yams, that are really easy in the winter. In our juice’s recipes, we have our core ones that you will find all the time, but then we do have the seasonal blends that come and go in the year.
Me: Is choosing seasonal produce also a part of an initiative to be sustainable, as much as it is about flavour and accessibility?
Caroline: Ya! I think when you think ‘in season’, A) it is what people are craving in that season, right? So it is about giving the palate what it’s really looking for. Then it is also about using what is naturally growing best at this time. So instead of pressuring a fruit or vegetable that takes a lot to grow in that season, it’s shifting your perspective and thinking “if this is in plenty right now – easy to grow in nature – we should try to use it as best as possible.”.
Me: How does a juice cleanse roll out?
Caroline: Well I think there are two different types of reasons todo a juice cleanse. We have two different types of cleanses based on that. One is more detoxing. So if you are really feeling like your system is feeling bloated, acting up, or you feel irritated by things you’ve been eating, then a Green Cleanse would be more of a detox cleanse. This is really focusing on flushing out things that have been building up and irritating your insides; like if you have been allergic to things and you need to flush it out. That would be a green cleanse. The Glory Cleanse is about just increasing the amount of nutrients and variety of enzymes that you are putting into your body at once. So that has a variety of beet juices, spinach, kale, etc. You are really getting a variety.
Me: There can be a LOT of controversy when it comes to juice cleanses. For example, the amount of sugar going into your body at once. In your opinion, what do you think is the true importance and value of a doing this form of detox?
Caroline: I think it always to decide, “Why are you doing this?”. The first question is to ask yourself that. If the most important part of the cleanse is to detox and keep sugar low, then you are going to focus on a green cleanse. Sugar is for sure a conversation right now. I think of it as almost the new gluten kind of conversation. What I think people need to recognize and do their research on is the difference between refined sugars and natural sugars… Because knowing that, is important when your differentiating factors. Also knowing the difference between how your body reacts to natural sugars versus refined sugars is the first important point. Then to also know, what level does your body need of sugar. There is a different variety. A kid can have way more natural sugar than an adult because they can burn it off quicker with their metabolism. Then you think level of [time]. A juice cleanse is something you do for three or five days. This is not something you do for the rest of your life; every single day. You have to think, “What are the benefits for my body that I am bringing in for this short amount of time and why am I doing it?”.
If you are interested in hearing the full live interview, stay tuned for posting dates!