Florenceville — Frozen food giant McCain Foods has announced a new company-wide shift toward healthy eating that leaves many New Brunswickers wondering about the future.
In 2014, McCain announced they were closing down a french fry plant on Prince Edward Island, and now they’re also planning to drastically change operations at their New Brunswick facilities in order to produce a new line of healthier food.
“It’s obvious in today’s health-crazed world that the consumer wants Brussels sprouts and chickpeas,” said company spokesperson Janelle Rioux. “So that’s what we’re going to give them. We’re getting into organic vegetables, and away from fries.
“We were a little unsure of the move at first, but officials from the provincial Department of Health and graduate students from UNB made a very convincing presentation that nobody wants to get fat, and since deep-fried, frozen foods contribute to obesity, we’re pretty sure the market will dry up once the general public figures out that diet, not genetics, is the reason for their weight issues.
“So, no more fries from McCain.”
Additionally, employees at the McCain plant in Florenceville will have mandatory exercise breaks every hour on the hour, the idea behind the rule being that the company should lead by example — junk food will be banned on the premises, and constant physical activity will be strongly encouraged.
While some local farmers have expressed a reluctance to move from potato production into other vegetables, calling it “a ploy to satisfy sandal-wearing hippies,” most have said they welcome the change, and that they were sick of looking at all those potatoes anyway.
Local schoolkids will be the hardest-hit by the announcement; about 3 years ago, District 14 officials ended the region’s traditional mid-fall “potato break,” and this news confirms what kids have feared ever since: that break isn’t ever coming back.
“This sucks,” said 13-year-old Dylan Harding of Carleton after hearing local farmers were trading their potato plants in for kale and radishes. “My older sister got a potato break, my dad got a potato break, but me? Not ever.
“I had big plans if potato break came back; I was gonna hang with my friends, text and play computer games. Now, I have to do all that in the classroom, instead of in the comfort of my home.”