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Minister Day Congratulates Winners of Export Achievement Awards

(No. 357 - November 26, 2009 - 4:45 p.m. EST) The Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, today congratulated the winners of the inaugural Canada Export Achievement Awards, organized by Export Development Canada and PROFIT magazine.

“These awards highlight the outstanding success of small and medium-sized Canadian companies in export markets around the world,” said Minister Day. “It is important that we all take pride in their accomplishments. They are an inspiration for other Canadian companies to go global and at the same time lay the foundation for increased economic prosperity at home.”

Minister Day added that the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service is ready to open doors around the world for companies focused on trade, like the award winners.

“Our government helps Canadian businesses build a global competitive advantage through the Trade Commissioner Service, Canada’s most comprehensive network of international business professionals,” said Minister Day. “Our trade commissioners are trained to point companies in the right direction and save them valuable time by providing them with the right tools.”

Located in more than 150 cities worldwide, and in regional offices across Canada, trade commissioners help companies achieve international business success by offering four key services: preparing for international markets, assessing market potential, finding qualified contacts and resolving problems.

The companies who won the Canada Export Achievement Awards follow by region, along with their chief executives:  

Atlantic Canada

Jewel Pop Inc., of Dartmouth, N.S.; Robert Smith, President

Jewel Pop Inc. produces jewellery with interchangeable beads. Launched in the highly competitive jewellery business in 2005, Jewel Pop has enjoyed success in the U.S. and plans to enter new markets in the U.K. and Japan.


Via Vegan Ltd., of Montreal, Que.; Manny Kohli and Inder Bedi, co-presidents

Via Vegan Ltd. designs women’s and men’s handbags made from recycled plastic bottles. The Matt & Nat lines of vegan handbags scored a big jump in exports last year with shelf space in high-end department stores in the U.S. and U.K.


FreeBalance of Ottawa, Ont.; Manuel Pietra, CEO

FreeBalance develops simple and flexible financial management software for governments, and has sold it in developing countries in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Prairies and Territories

Alta Exports International Ltd. of Calgary, Alta.; Gary D. Smith, President, and Kate Kolstad, Vice-President

Alta Exports International Ltd. produces breeding cattle and bovine genetic materials and technologies that have pierced new markets in Russia and Kazakhstan. The company plans to expand to China and Uzbekistan.


BioteQ Environmental Technologies Inc. of Vancouver, B.C.; Brad Marchant, CEO

BioteQ Environmental Technologies Inc. develops waste water treatment plants and technologies for the mining industry. BioteQ has grown from a domestic to a global player, with customers in the U.S., Mexico, China and Australia.

For more information on how the Government of Canada can help companies do business abroad, please consult The Canadian Trade Commissioner Service.

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Mélisa Leclerc
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Trade Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada