As I made my way from The Kettle Drop-In Centre a few blocks to the West Coast Reduction Ltd. headquarters on Venables, I was excited to meet President and CEO of the company, Barry Glotman, who has supported The Kettle’s annual Art Against Stigma show for 13 years.
Upon entering the building, I was greeted by a life-size horse statue, and on the walls hung beautiful paintings of Vancouver. I could tell already that art was important to this family-owned and operated business.
Sitting down with Barry was lovely, and highly informative as he told me a brief history of the business. West Coast Reduction Ltd. began as a family business, founded by Jack Diamond and his sons, Gordon and Charles, in 1964. The business began as a facility to process inedible meat byproducts, and has since evolved to recycling inedible animal byproducts, stale bread, and even handling canola oil and producing feed stocks for sustainable bio-fuels.
“Our community wants sustainability, and a low carbon footprint, but without us, this is simply not possible. We complete the circle of local farming and sustainability.”
Barry explains how their slogan, ‘Nothing left behind,’ refers not only to the business of preventing tons of waste from filling landfills, but also extends to the community and to their employees. “We don’t leave our communities behind, we give back. We are a family-run business, and we value good working relationships with all of our employees.”
This foundation of giving back began as far back as the business itself. “From the beginning, everyone in the family was brought up to understand that if you can give away some of your wealth, you do.” Giving back to the community of East Vancouver has included a $2 million donation to The Cultch (to renovate the York Theatre), annual sponsorship of the Eastside Culture Crawl, and to The Kettle Society. The Diamond Foundation has also given generously to support the arts, health initiatives, and education.
“Giving back to our community is just what we do.”