Meet John & Cathie
Founder and CEO of JCB Gourmet Mushrooms, John Bakker grew up on the family farm near Ottawa, Canada's capital city. He studied agriculture at college and taught agriculture to young people in Zambia, where he first started to experiment with edible mushrooms.
After working in a number of different fields, including forestry, transportation, and real estate, John launched JCB Gourmet Mushrooms in early 2020, on the suggestion of a friend. John is a people-person, a problem solver, and a hard worker - values instilled in him by his parents. He loves to get his hands dirty and tackle the complexity and diversity that each day brings. He has built the business from the ground up, a learning curve that has been steep but rewarding.
Chief Marketing Officer Cathie is the 'C' in JCB Gourmet Mushrooms. A needed "reality check" for her "big-picture" husband, Cathie loves the challenge of dealing with all the details of the new venture, to compliment John's focus on production and future projects.
Like John, Cathie has a background in life sciences, graduating with a Bachelor of Science from Macdonald College, now part of McGill University in Montreal. Crediting her love for animals to her zookeeper grandfather, Cathie worked in entomology before switching her focus to programming and business. Cathie is tapping into her strengths, including digital and organizational skills acquired in the high-tech sector, to grow the company's on-line presence and discover new and interesting ways to cook with mushrooms.