ICYMI: Changing grocery habits, Ragu disappears, Cronk and more

Here are five food-related stories that you may have missed this week

In the news this week, we saw stories that allow Canadians to take a momentary break from the plethora of Covid-19 stories that have been flooding our screens. 

Researchers at Dalhousie University studied the grocery-shopping habits of Canadians these past months, and discovered that Canadians have gone through some significant changes, shifting from an initial reliance on non-perishables to a more thoughtful and planned approach. On the topic of non-perishables, if you were looking to stock up on pasta sauce, you will notice fewer varieties on shelves. Ragu announced that they will no longer be selling their products in Canada. 

A drink that first popped up in a mysterious advertisement in 1883 has made its way back to pop culture through a local Calgary brewery. 

In Beirut, groceries are the least of people's worries. When one Lebanese-Canadian business owner travelled to help the victims of Lebanon's fatal explosion by providing food and food supplies, the plan did not pan out as expected, as he soon learned that most didn’t even have the kitchen or home in which to cook. 

Finally, Canmore will be holding its very first major Pride celebration.

Canadians' food habits have shifted over the course of the pandemic

People around the world have had to make significant changes to their routines this year, attitude toward food and our subsequent buying habits are no exception.

A study conducted by Dalhousie University discovered that at the beginning of the pandemic, Canadians were putting more non-perishables into their carts. More specifically, Kraft Dinner and peanut butter were among the most coveted by Canadian shoppers. Fast forward a few months, the number of visits to the grocery store have also dramatically decreased from a couple of times a week to a couple of times every few weeks, as Canadians become more confident with cooking at home and are planning their meals better, which researchers believe will leave a long-lasting impact on Canadian's food habits.

This planning and preparing meals at home is expected to save Canadians some nickels and dimes, which could potentially counteract the estimated four percent rise in food prices. 

Read more about this from Global News.

Popular pasta sauce brand, Ragu, pulling out from Canadian market

If you have noticed something missing in the pasta aisle these past few weeks, you're not alone. Shoppers have noticed that they haven’t been able to find Ragu pasta sauce on shelves for a while now, so they took to Twitter. 

After asking why they could no longer find Ragu in New Brunswick, the company replied, "We regret to inform you that RAGÚ® has made the hard decision to exit the Canadian pasta-sauce market. We hope that you have enjoyed the delicious taste of RAGÚ® and are very sorry for any inconvenience." Although, when you visit the website, there is no reasoning to be found in regards to Ragu being pulled off of Canadian shelves.

Read more about this from CTV News.

Cronk returns to Calgary after 137 years


A post shared by Cold Garden Beverage Company (@cold_garden) on

When antique photos of Cronk went viral after Paul Fairie came across an old newspaper ad and posted it on Twitter, the owners of Cold Garden Brewery knew they had a solid idea on their hands. As the advertisement appeared in the Calgary Herald in 1883, "Cronk is the drink." "Cronk is good." "Buy Cronk." But what exactly is Cronk? A recipe was found for this mysterious drink, containing sassafras, sarsaparilla, hops, chamomile, cinnamon, ginger, green tea and molasses.  

After some trial and error, the team at Cold Garden was able to produce a version that they said tastes like diluted and fizzy Jagermeister, and they began selling stubby bottles of the herbal concoction on August 19th. Proceeds from Cronk will go towards Alex Community Health Centre and Heritage Calgary.

Read more about this drink from Global News.

Lebanon doesn't need food supplies, it needs help rebuilding


A post shared by Mohamad Fakih (@ceo_mohamad.paramount) on

After a deadly explosion in Beirut, just three weeks ago, people scrambled to support those in Lebanon's capital city. In an effort to support Lebanese people during this time,  Mohamad Fakih, the CEO of the Lebanese cuisine franchise Paramount Fine Foods, travelled to his home town of Beirut with the intent of providing warm meals for those who were displaced. Alongside him on this journey is the Lebanese Canadian Coalition (LCC), who are working on fundraising $2.5 million towards rebuilding the homes lost in the blast. 

Upon his arrival, he realized the needs there went far deeper than expected. Before sandwiches and food supplies, what people really needed was help rebuilding what they had lost. Fakih’s team have since transitioned to giving away tarps for people to temporarily cover windows and doors that have been lost, giving them a place to sleep. 

The LCC has raised $430,000 so far, and Fakih is hoping beyond reaching their goal, other organizations will use the LCC as a reference point when matching donations.

Read more about the LCC's fundraising efforts from CTV News.

Canmore throws their first major Pride celebration


A post shared by Tapas Canmore (@tapascanmore) on

For the first time in recent history, Canmore will be throwing a bash to celebrate Pride. Held at Tapas Restaurant, the Prism Party will be held August 25th and will feature a DJ to get guests moving and a canvas on which party-goers can write their messages of support for the community. 

In addition to the fun, this socially-distanced Pride party sees proceeds from cocktail purchases go toward the Skipping Stone Foundation via the Shake, Stir and Strainbow initiative. The event is free, with $1 from each cocktail purchase going towards Skipping Stone Foundation, which  trans and gender diverse people with high-quality and easy to access care. The party will be following strict Covid-19 guidelines and asks that guests wear a mask while not at their table. 

Read more about this from the Rocky Mountain Outlook.