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Hi, I’m Sarah. Welcome to The Daily English Show.
Today’s guest is Jeff. Jeff is the owner of a company in Nelson called Silver King Soya Foods. They make tofu.
Last week, Jeff kindly let us come and visit and watch the tofu making process.
And it was really interesting. And we filmed it and that is going to be on this Sunday.
Jeff was pretty busy making the tofu but he agreed to answer a few questions on camera while he worked.
The first thing I asked him was: How long have you been making tofu? And he told me the story of how and why he began.
Well, I got into this by accident, quite literally. I used to be a tree planter.
And, ah, in 1989, ah, we were coming back from California. We had a bad car accident. And after that I couldn’t really plant trees. For a while I couldn’t even walk. A very short while, but, for a while. And then ah, I had already talked with this woman and I we were planning on ... she had ... came to me and said, “Would you like to start a tofu business with me?” And I said, “Tofu? What’s that?”
It was, sort of, really like that. You know. My wife says we’d been eating it all along, but I never even knew. So, um, I said sure. Mostly cause I liked her.
But, ah ... And we went up to see Greg (Craig?) Lund and his wife Ellen (Helen?) were making tofu up in Kaslo. They really started this business.
The accident for us happened on March 1st. And it was just about the time I was getting ready to go tree planting. Um, and I couldn’t do that anymore. And, ah, so, I sat around a lot and, ah, Greg meanwhile moved his tofu factory from up there down to Nelson. Anyway, he moved down here so his kids could go to the Waldorf school. And he moved the tofu shop - he had it in a trailer by that time, he started it out in his basement, but he had it in a, in a trailer. And he moved the trailer down to Nelson, to Silver King road. And renamed it Silver King Soya Foods.
And he was looking for help to wash buckets. And wash up after making it. It was a lot different configuration than this. He was making the tofu, not with a pressure cooker, but just with ah, three camp stoves, with, ah, big pots on top of them. And he wanted someone to wash up for him. So, I figured that was sort of within my limited capabilities then. And I started washing di... washing up in the tofu shop.
And meanwhile Greg was trying to sell the shop because he thought he had post-polio syndrome. And he felt his whole body going numb on him. Um, so he wanted out of the business. And I didn’t want him to sell it because then I’d lose my dishwashing job. Which was about forty dollars a week, fif... sixty dollars a week I think.
So I offered to become partners with him and ah, I joined the business that way. And we were partners for about two or three years. And then he got a real job, up in Kaslo, ah, working in the hospital. So he moved back to Kaslo and sold me the rest of the business. And, ah, I moved it from his place out there - ‘cause I figured sooner or later he was going to sell it – down to this. And at that point this brewery was still ah, very falling down, it was ... holes in the roof and everything. It was really... There was no, no other businesses in here except these guys next door, Trainor Mechanical was the only business in here. And right at the same time I moved in Keith next door that has the Live Metal moved in. So, um, he and I are the oldest tenants downstairs here. Actually there were some people upstairs.
Kia Ora, in Stick News today public nudity has been banned in town called Brattleboro in the United States after officials received several complaints.
Vermont is a state in the north east of United States of America.
According to Reuters, Vermont has a live-and-let-live tradition, allowing skinny-dipping and nude sunbathing.
But one town in Vermont has had enough of the nudity.
Officials in Brattleboro say they received quite a number of complaints about people wearing only their birthday suits in pubic.
So this month they passed an emergency rule. Now, according to Wikipedia, nudity is banned on the main roads and within 250 feet of any school or place of worship.
Skinny-dipping and nude sunbathing is still legal but anyone doing "full monty" in the middle of town could be fined $100.
And that was Stick News for Monday the 30th of July.
conversations with sarah
#276 Did it take long to learn how to make?
Step 1: Repeat Sarah’s lines.
Step 2: Read Sarah’s lines and talk to Jeff.
Sarah Did it take long to learn how to make?
Jeff Not to learn the basics, I mean you already know the basics, right? Just from watching and listening to, ah, what Mitch was saying. But to, to make it good takes a while to learn.
Sarah Do you think the market has changed over the years?
Jeff I don’t know, I’ve found the market pretty steady for the last 17 years or however long I’ve been doing it. We actually make less tofu now than we did 17 years ago.
Sarah Why is that?
Jeff I don’t know. It’s a good thing as far as I’m concerned right now, because, ah, we package it all. We didn’t package any of it to begin with. Packaging takes at least half of the time.
Sarah Do you have to package it for health reasons?
Jeff Well ... the health department made it really hard for the stores that wanted to sell bulk. Like see those bins up there? I had lids, with sliding lids and they had our name on them and everything, I had about 40 of those out at all the stores around here. Including the big supermarkets. Save-On, it was called Overweighty Foods, now it’s Save-On. And they sold it in bulk bins like that. And I would take them lots of tofu in bulk.
But now, they’re all packaged. There’s about two places in town that you can buy it ... actually there’s one place that you can still buy it in bulk, and that’s the co-op.
Listen to Jeff Mock speaking on a radio show called Deconstructing Dinner.
An article about why Jeff Mock came to Canada.
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