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Our Ingredients

"A balanced diet is a cookie in each hand."

-  Barbara Johnson  -

Cookies and biscuits are among the oldest baked goods. These original cookies often lacked the sugar we use today, but were staples in every agricultural society. Modern sugary cookies were first made in ancient Persia, and by the 14th century were found throughout most of the world.

Ruth Graves Wakefield (1903-1977) was the owner of the famous Toll House Inn. She invented the ubiquitous chocolate chip cookie when experimenting with her butter drop dough cookie recipe (maybe we should look into that) and a Nestle chocolate bar. Even today her exact recipe can be found adorning the backs of many Nestle products.

We are proud to bring you our version of a chocolate chip cookie, one of the most comfy and heartwarming treats you can enjoy fresh out of the oven. We use the ingredients listed below, and explore our reasoning why. We invite you to discuss any of the topics raised, including some of the more unfortunate aspects of global agriculture that we cannot deny.


We use sugars from Canadian-owned Lantic Inc., which as far as we know doesn't have any claims to ethical fame but is processed here in Canada. Whenever possible supporting industries close to home is an important principle of sustainability, and we are happy to bring you their quality cane sugars made in Canada since the 1800s.


Today the majority of sugar is from sugarcane, grown throughout every tropical region. An increasing percentage comes from sugar beets, but both crops can have major environmental impacts. Sugarcane is incredibly water intensive and generally grown in monoculture plantations. Sugar beets are usually grown in conjunction with damaging pesticides that threaten the health of pollinators and other wildlife. Sustainable and responsible sugar production is growing in the industry but unfortunately remains a major environmental issue.


Sugarcane plantations also have a long colonial and exploitative history. I have firsthand experience visiting a dubious sugarcane plantation using corrupt and immoral practices. Illegal workers were brought across a border and kept in hovels in a 'company town' while working on the plantation. Their income was largely used to pay for their food and lodgings, all provided by the very same owner of the plantation.


We use a premium blend of real and artificial vanilla. While we would love to only use 100% real vanilla in our cookies, the cost is unfortunately prohibitive. Despite this, we believe that a portion of real vanilla helps access the complexity and depth of true vanilla bean flavour in our cookies.


Vanilla is mostly grown in Madagascar and Indonesia, with large contributions from China, Mexico, and Papua New Guinea. It is a very labour intensive crop, as no part of vanilla agriculture has been industrialized. Farmers still hand-pollinate the plant's flowers through a process discovered by a slave, Edmond Albius, in 1841. Despite the high price of pure vanilla, farmers who produce the raw beans remain largely impoverished due to a combination of economic forces and environmental challenges.


We use Canadian-made unsalted European-style cultured butter. That’s a lot of words to describe butter. Unsalted (aka sweet) is pretty straightforward and allows us to carefully control how much salt goes into each cookie. Europe remains the centre of butter-dom, and their standards call for a higher fat content that gives it more body and bite. Cultured butter is fermented (like yogurt) and churned afterwards, bringing a deep, rich and creamy taste that stands out. Canadian dairy has long been known for its quality and high standards, but like most industries is under pressure from global market forces and increasing centralization.


We use free-range eggs from a variety of Nova Scotian farms. We believe that sustainable farming includes good animal welfare. Free-range chickens can roam at will in a pasture, consuming wild forage and contributing to the local ecosystem. Eggs are one of the best local sources of sustainable protein, and we are excited to use high-quality Nova Scotian raised chicken eggs.

Salt and Baking Soda

We use Windsor salt, a staple found in many Canadian homes. Windsor operates a salt mine here in Pugwash and produces a typical high-quality salt. No need to reinvent the wheel. We also use the same Arm & Hammer baking soda that virtually all Canadians do, and why not? With a such a simple product, there is something to be said for the consistency, quality, and price of the big corporate offering. Sometimes, counter-intuitively, that can be the most sustainable choice (for the record we don't have any data about that either way, just saying).

Wheat Flour

We use Parrish & Heimbecker flour, milled here in Halifax from Canadian grain. Since the Halifax mill was built in 1968 it has supplied Atlantic Canada with high quality flour through a variety of brands and companies. Supporting Canadian-owned industries such as P&H bolsters our national and regional economies and contributes to the sustainability of society-at-large.


Wheat is one of the world's largest crops, with a history dating back to the beginning of human civilization. As one of the most widely grown crops, wheat can be symbolic for much of our struggle with achieving sustainable agriculture. The 'Green Revolution' massively increased global production of the crop, but through the use of petrochemically-derived fertilizers, pesticides, and genetic modifications. GMO wheat is an interesting topic, as some GMO practices are critical to sustainability (disease resistance, drought tolerance) while others (such as adapting wheat to the use of specific pesticides) contribute heavily to major environmental issues.

Gluten-free Flour

We use two brands of GF flour, depending on availability: Bob's Red Mill and La Merveilleuse by Cuisine l'Angélique.

Among the pioneers of the whole gluten-free industry, Bob's Red Mill produces a premium blend of flours to replicate the consistency and characteristics of wheat flour. Bob's Red Mill is a powerhouse of fairness and quality, including a program that helps employees acquire stock in the company. It eventually resulted in total success and the company is now wholly employee owned.

Cuisine l'Angélique is a family-run business located in Quebec. They began by making their own flours for home use and quickly expanded to provide the public with their high quality GF and dairy-free products.


We use Rodelle's Organic Baking Cocoa, another forward-thinking premium quality product. The majority of the world's cocoa is grown in West Africa, with the remainder coming from tropical South America and Southeast Asia. Even today it is almost entirely grown on small family-owned farms using labour-intensive methods. Cocoa production has been linked with many exploitative practices, including modern day slavery.


One of Rodelle's crown jewels is a partnership with a large farmer cooperative in Madagascar producing vanilla, forming a fair-trade deal that avoids historical resource-based exploitation.


What could flaxseed have to do with cookies?! Flaxseed is chock full of Omega-3, fibre, and lignins. We use ground Golden Flaxseed in our Lactation Chippers to enhance and enrich their nutritional profile. Flaxseed is so good for you we are thinking about introducing it to more of our cookies!

Brewer's Yeast

The production of beer is a lively affair, nurturing rich colonies of yeast fungi that do all the hard work. As beer goes through the various stages of brewing, there comes a time when the yeast must be taken out. This yeast is coveted by many, used fresh as barm in baking or dried out into a nutrient-dense powder. It is heavy with many B-vitamins and minerals, perfect for use in our Lactation cookies.

Shredded Coconut

We use unsweetened shredded coconut in many of our recipes. Coconut is an excellent source of minerals, antioxidants, and plant-based fats that can help lower bad cholesterol. The tropical accent that coconut brings to our cookies brightens and rounds out their overall taste profile.

Rolled Oats

We are very excited to use organic and gluten-free rolled oats from La Minoterie des Anciens. Located on the northern coast of the Gaspé peninsula of Quebec, La Minoterie was founded in 2012 to allow farmers in this region to mill locally and help revitalize the agricultural sector of the area.

Oats, in whatever form, are an incredibly healthy whole grain jam-packed with protein, fibre, vitamins and minerals. Not only healthy, they provide a satisfying chew while adding a rich and toasted flavour to our oatmeal cookies. Oatmeal Chippers and Lavachunks are secretly our favourite cookies of all (shh don't tell the Originals).


We use delicious organic Sultana raisins made with Thompson Seedless grapes. Sultana raisins are made using different grape varieties throughout the world. Thompson Seedless are the most common kind of Sultana here in North America, but elsewhere they can vary in size, colour, and flavour according to the grape used.

The traditional and fruity flavour of raisins in the classic Oatmeal Raisin cookie provide an alternative way to get your sugars without leaning on chocolate. We recommend you try a batch of these when you are looking for a new yet familiar taste adventure!


A true superfood (except for those allergic!), walnuts provide significant quantities of healthy fats, fibre, and more. It is hard to overstate their positive impact and even small amounts can have remarkably wide-ranging benefits. The best part: they taste great!

Walnuts were the one extra ingredient that often made their way into the original family recipe when I was growing up. They are a wonderful balance of chew and crunch, enhancing each bite with that rich nutty flavour.


We use several different types of chocolate from two different chocolatiers. Barry Callebaut produces superior quality chocolate in the finest Belgian traditions. We use their dark chocolate blocks as well as white chocolate callets and blocks. From Hershey's we use top quality semi-sweet chocolate chips, found in the majority of our recipes.
Barry Callebaut and Hershey's are huge brands that consistently produce world-class chocolate. They are also criticized regarding environmental and human rights issues. We have investigated a variety of options and most have equally long and dubious histories. The history of cocoa and chocolate is inextricably linked to the colonial era of history and continues to suffer from that legacy.

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