The first Canco Supermarket opened in Saltair earlier this month.
Located in the former Byron’s building, the arrival of the supermarket has been well-received in the largely rural community wedged between Ladysmith and Chemainus.
“I am excited to see a local grocery store open again,” noted Lynne Smith, the Area G director for the Cowichan Valley Regional District.
Local co-owner Drisht Preet (DP) Singh operates other Canco locations in Chemainus, Duncan and Nanaimo. The Chemainus gas station and convenience store opened in July of 2019.
The Saltair business is solely a supermarket and does not have gas pumps.
“I have had a few tours with DP Singh as he has worked to create a new community friendly space for locals to easily access their groceries,” Smith indicated.
“The shelves are stocked with all our grocery needs. There is a coffee station, slushy dispenser, baked goods, etc.”
“All we need is support from the community for all of their essential groceries,” said Singh. “We are open for all the feedback.
“We will try to keep our community close and tight – store nice and clean. Best customer service ever.”
As he vowed in Chemainus from the outset for both gas and goods, Singh has pledged to keep prices competitive at the Saltair supermarket.
“We just need local support,” he emphasized. “I promise we will keep our prices low and smiles wide open.”
The store will be open every day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Once things settle down, Singh will look to add lotto and more amenities, including the potential for a garden centre in the spring.
“As the demand increases we will expand our supply as well,” he said.
Canco is a B.C. company, established in Kelowna.
“We’re looking at reaching the towns where there’s less opportunity,” Singh added. “That’s what the focus is. Very excited for this product.”
Getting the Saltair location operational was a little more challenging for obvious reasons.
“It took us so long to get things done because of COVID,” Singh conceded.
Canco will be looking to hire some staff so he encouraged anyone interested in a position to drop off a resume.
“It’s like a dream come true for me,” Singh summed up. “I’ve wanted a store like this.”