It’s food. It’s art. It’s local. It’s personalized. It’s a gift. It’s The Prairie Grazer. If this is the first time you’re hearing this business name, or if you’ve already visited their storefront, you’ll want to learn more in this TUF Local article. So with that, I’d like to introduce Meghan and Cristie…..
REALTOR® /Mortgage Associate
Describe your business: The Prairie Grazer creates hand-crafted artisan boxes and grazing tables featuring local products and ingredients.
What drives you to do what you do? What motivates you? We truly love what we do! Every box is a work of art and we pride ourselves at being the best at what we do. We love that we get to be a part of so many special moments including birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, showers, elopements, engagements and more! We are so grateful that our customers continue to choose us for all of their gifting needs and special events.
What has surprised you most when owning your own business? The support from the community around us including customers, other business owners, and our suppliers. Everyone has been so helpful in offering advice and cheering us on every step of the way.
What was it like when you first started? The truth is we felt like a fish out of water! There were a lot of hoops we had to jump through and licenses we had to get in place before starting our business. Because there was no one else like us in Saskatoon, it wasn’t easy to find the information we needed. Once we had all of the regulatory pieces in place we chose to spend a lot of time fostering relationships with other local businesses as that is truly our focus! To support local wherever possible and give back to our community.
What is something people don’t know about your business? Most people aren’t aware that we have been in business since September 2020. We started our business working out of The Local Kitchen before leasing our own stand-alone space in December 2021! If you haven’t been to our store, you need to come by! We have an absolutely beautiful space and we love celebrating local businesses within our space. We also almost always have grab-and-go options whether you’re looking for lunch or an easy weeknight dinner!
What would your customers say they love most about doing business with you? That’s a great question! We try to be very flexible and work with any requests that come our way. Our #1 priority is the happiness of our customers and so we often go above and beyond to make that happen! We love the reactions we get from many of our customers when they open an artisan box for the first time or see the finished product of a grazing table! It’s definitely the best part about a business like this.
What are some odd requests you’ve had from customers/clients? I don’t think we have had anything too odd, but many customers like to request customizations to their boxes or boxes for special themed events! We always try to work with the customer, as long as we have the resources available to us!
How do you motivate and encourage each other? Yourself? or Staff? We are both very Type A personalities who love to stay busy. We share a very strong work ethic and are often trying to make life easier for the other person! There are definitely hard days, but we have always said that it’s our partnership before anything. Everything we do, everything we decide on, we do it as a team. Whenever things get tough we try to refocus on why we started this business in the first place – to support local and stimulate our economy in the middle of a pandemic. Our team is a group of absolutely epic human beings who share that vision with us! They take pride in everything they do!
Where do you see your business in the next years? The Prairie Grazer has big plans for the next few years! While we can’t share exactly what those plans are yet, our customers will be the first to know! Stay tuned to our Instagram!
What are your greatest challenges? Often it can be difficult to source some items locally simply due to the climate we live in. We often face challenges with keeping our pricing competitive with the rising cost of food, which is even greater when you strive to support local. We have also faced several supply chain issues due to COVID.
What is something most people don’t know about you? That while we absolutely love our business, we still both have careers outside of The Prairie Grazer that keep us very busy! When we’re not creating beautiful artisan boxes in the kitchen, Meghan is a teacher and Cristie works in labour relations.
What do you love most about Saskatoon? The community! We come from a truly amazing city with lots to offer! There is so much to celebrate within Saskatoon from amazing local businesses, to beautiful scenery to the best people! We have both lived in other cities.
Why do you think it is important for people to support local? Supporting local helps to stimulate our local economy. It really is a win-win for everyone involved. We are fortunate enough to have a lot of high-quality products produced right here in Saskatchewan. It’s important to champion those businesses and contribute to their success as many local businesses are invested in the well-being of our local organizations. Furthermore, supporting local helps our economy, our environment and keeps money within our home province!
What are your favorite restaurants? That’s tough as there are so many good ones! Some of our favorites are Una, Oeb, Leopolds, Hometown Diner, and Ace Burger! There are just so many good options for good eats in Saskatoon!
What are your favorite things to do locally? We both share a passion for running and Saskatoon has some amazing trails around the city to get outside and get some fresh air! We also have some incredible spots by the river that are perfect for a picnic or an afternoon with the kids. We also both enjoy a good glass of wine and there are some fantastic spots in Saskatoon to sit down and relax after a long day in the kitchen!