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National BBQ Day

Meal Exchange would like to thank everyone who participated in National BBQ Day 2013. What an amazing day it was! We had a blast BBQing on the Toronto Island for our staff BBQ and we really enjoyed all the posts coming in through social media. 

Check out some of the highlights in our special National BBQ Day 2013 STORIFY.

National BBQ Day has come and gone but we hope you’re still cooking with delicious local foods. Thanks to our wonderful sponsors, we have a number of prizes that National BBQ Day participants qualified for by registering their BBQ and sharing their experience.

National BBQ Day has received a tremendous amount of support from Canadians and various organizations nationwide. Thank you for supporting local food and local farmers in your communities!



Yesterday, we received a message from Ontario Minister of Agriculture and Food, the Honourable Kathleen Wynn supporting National BBQ Day and outlining what her government is doing to raise the profile of local food.


We’ve also received a number of messages from Members of Parliament across the country. Read what they had to say about National BBQ Day and local food.

Posted on in National BBQ Day

Time to fire up the grill and celebrate local food! Hope you picked out some delicious food from your local farmer. Here at Meal Exchange we’ve packed our picnic baskets and we’re climbing aboard the ferry to celebrate National BBQ Day on the Toronto Island. We all can’t wait to dig in to all the delectable local fare the team has prepared. Check in on our festivities by connecting with us through social media (@MealExchange).

If you haven’t registered your BBQ event, you can still do so HERE!

Hundreds of Canadians are BBQing across the country for National BBQ Day today, with some fundraiser events going on as well. We want to hear all about your National BBQ Day experience whether you're a host or guest! Today is the day to join in on the national conversation about eating local – Tweet, Instagram and/or Facebook about your National BBQ Day event to bring awareness to the importance of eating local and to win some cool prizes, including a Napoleon grill and Epicure Selections gift basket!

Make sure you use the official National BBQ Day hashtag - #NationalBBQDay – to qualify to win prizes. More info about what you can win HERE.

Don’t use social media? E-mail us a story about your experience with some pictures to qualify.

Early-Bird Contest

Win one of four FrogWash sample packs by uploading a photo to Instagram of where you purchased your local fare. Contest deadline is today by noon! Make sure you use #NationalBBQDay in your upload so we can track entries.

Get in on the #NationalBBQDay conversation

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A big thank you to everyone at Napoleon Gourmet Grills, our presenting sponsor! Napoleon Gourmet Grills has been the presenting sponsor for two years in a row now and without their support and promotional assistance, National BBQ Day would not be the event that it is today.

Napoleon Gourmet Grills was established in Barrie, Ontario in 1976. Innovative engineering and design, advanced manufacturing techniques, dedicated customer service, outstanding product quality, and superior warranties distinguish Napoleon from its competitors.

As a Canadian company that has gone worldwide since its inception in the 70’s, Napoleon Gourmet Grills understands the importance of supporting local food and local farmers. And since National BBQ Day is all about grilling up local foods, Napoleon Gourmet Grills is a perfect fit for this event.

You can win a Napoleon Prestige® Series 500 Grill by participating in National BBQ Day. Register your BBQ and share you National BBQ Day experience through social media on July 13th to qualify.

Posted on in National BBQ Day

Oh how time has flown. National BBQ Day is upon us! Have you started getting ready for Saturday? It’s time to make a trip to your local farmers market and prepare your National BBQ Day menu. Check out our Food Bloggers of Canada Recipe Series for culinary inspiration!

By registering your BBQ, you join the national conversation about the importance of eating local and have the chance to win some great prizes! Your friends and family can register as attendees for your event as well – invite them through your National BBQ Day profile at when you register.



The Grill Master Prize: Napoleon Prestige® Series 500 Grill - this shiny new grill gives backyard chefs all the cooking features needed for exciting grilled dishes!


The Foodie Prize: Gift basket with over $350 of Epicure Selections BBQ products – this includes a variety of seasonings, rubs, herbs, and sauces.


The Eco Prize: One of 20 FrogWash sample packs – a family-safe alternative to many cleaning products, this cleaner is strong enough to clean your BBQ yet safe enough to clean a fish tank.

How do you win?

National BBQ Day is all about supporting local farmers and bringing awareness to the importance of eating local. To qualify to win some great prizes courtesy of our sponsors, SHARE your National BBQ Day experience on July 13th through social media!

We want to see and hear about what you’re cooking, where you got it, who’s at your BBQ and why eating local is important to you!

Share photos and stories through Twitter, Facebook and/or Instagram (or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. us), tag us @MealExchange and use #NationalBBQDay so we can track all of the posts coming through social media. Winners will be selected at random!

And more ways to win…

Snap a picture of where you’re purchasing your local fare for your National BBQ Day event, whether it is a farm, farmer’s market or CSA. Upload it to Instagram by Saturday at noon and use #NationalBBQDay – you’ll be entered to win one of four FrogWash sample packs before National BBQ Day even officially gets going!

Get in on the #NationalBBQDay conversation

Follow @MealExchange on Twitter and Instagram & LIKE us on Facebook to get in on the National BBQ Day conversation nation-wide.

If you have any questions, leave a comment below or e-mail us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We've really enjoyed working with members of Food Bloggers of Canada nation-wide over the past few weeks leading up to National BBQ Day. A big thank you to all the bloggers that shared their favourite BBQ recipes profiling local foods!

Whether you’re looking for something different to grill or need help planning a local BBQ menu for your guests, check out the recipes below for some culinary inspiration.

With National BBQ Day only 4 days away, our Food Bloggers of Canada recipe series wraps up with a recipe shared by Mardi, blogger at eat. live. travel. write. and co-founder of Food Bloggers of Canada. Pizza with mozzarella, olive oil and basil – made on top of homemade dough and grilled to perfection.

If you’ve been eating store-bought, frozen burgers all your life, then you’ve seriously been missing out. Putting together your own burger patties is simple and will make the burger taste a million times better – we promise! Karen from Kravings Blog has shared with us a recipe for her Kravings Burger – saving you from the curse of the frozen burger.

A summer of BBQing can usually descend into a repetitive cycle of the same, albeit delicious, foods being prepared. Corn on the cob, asparagus, vegetable skewers and various meats are popular choices that get played out over months of BBQing throughout the summer. However, there are a number of produce choices that unexpectedly translate really well as grill items. If you catch yourself BBQing the same things, try incorporating these items into your menu. Canada spans such a large distance, so remember that one item may be local to you and another might not be.

We hope everyone had a great Canada Day long weekend! Continuing our Food Bloggers of Canada Recipe Series, Shana from Folks Gotta Eat has shared with us 3 of her favourite BBQ recipes to help create a locally-sourced menu for National BBQ Day – everything grilled of course.

Local foods are fresher and simply taste better. Keeping a recipe simple to highlight the delicious flavours of local fare can really make a dish stand out. Maya has put the spotlight on zucchini with her grilled lemon zucchini recipe from Maya’s Kitchen.

Posted on in National BBQ Day


We are very excited to have Epicure Selections join us as our sponsor for National BBQ Day 2013! Epicure Selections is a 100% Canadian, 100% family-owned, women-led company that provides consumers with herb and spice blends, dressings, marinades, as well as various condiments. They recently shared with us their thoughts on why they chose to sponsor National BBQ Day and why supporting local is important to them. Check it out...

As brie lovers and overall cheese aficionados, this recipe for Grilled Brie and Ciabatta Topped with Slow-Roasted Sunblushed Tomatoes courtesy of Valerie from More Than Burnt Toast got us excited! Cheese infused with the smokiness of the BBQ, melting over a delicious loaf… how could it get any better? Throw on some slow-roasted tomatoes for extra flavour and it does!


Kicking off our Food Bloggers of Canada Recipe Series for National BBQ Day, Redawna from has shared with us a mouth-watering recipe for 16 Hour Slow Smoked Pulled Pork. Just look at that tender, smoked pork in the picture and don’t try to deny that you’re suddenly craving a pulled pork sandwich.

We are excited to announce that we have partnered with Food Bloggers of Canada to bring you an exclusive Food Bloggers of Canada Recipe Series for National BBQ Day.

National BBQ Day is just 4 weeks away and it’s time to start thinking about what your menu for the big day will be. Each week leading up to National BBQ Day on July 13th, we’ll be posting recipes from FBC members that we’re sure will offer up tons of culinary inspiration for your BBQ.

The first Food Bloggers of Canada Recipe Series post will go live this Friday!

Share with us what you’re planning to cook up for National BBQ Day in the comments below.

Follow Food Bloggers of Canada on Twitter: @foodbloggersCA

Register your BBQ here!

Work. School. Kids. Chores. Family responsibilities. Our lives can get pretty busy, but that shouldn’t stop us from discovering local food and farmers. Going to the farmers market isn’t the only way to access local food anymore.  As local food increases in demand, a number of alternative options are available for those that may not be able to make a weekly trip to their local market. Discover them just in time for National BBQ Day.

As National BBQ Day preparations begin to heat up here at Meal Exchange (have you registered your event yet?), a debate across Canada has ignited putting into question the definition of “local food.”

A burger joint in Alliston, ON came under fire last month for advertising their beef burgers as “local” even though the beef was raised 200 km away from the restaurant. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) threatened to fine the restaurant $50,000 for violating its policy on the definition of “local”, which previously recognized “local” as “food originated within a 50 km radius of the place where it is sold.”

As the weather heats up and the summer season starts to set in, the BBQ gets cued up more and more. We hope you’ve begun to practice those great local food recipes for National BBQ Day! So you’ve got your BBQ fired up, but can your backyard shindig be hurting the environment? Not to worry, we’ve got a few BBQ’ing tips to keep your cookouts green.

Welcome back to those that have participated with us in previous years and thank you for your continued support! An excited hello to everyone joining for their first time, we look forward to connecting with you over the coming weeks!

Meal Exchange has envisioned National BBQ Day (July 13, 2013) as a great way to celebrate local foods with your friends and family, in your own backyard. Buying local benefits your food system, your local economy, and your tastebuds! We’ve also moved National BBQ Day into July this year so you can enjoy more local foods being in-season.

Registration is now open! Register your own BBQ event online or register to let us know you’re participating in a BBQ hosted by a friend or family member, for a chance to win a Napoleon BBQ Grill and other great prizes.

By hosting and/or participating in a BBQ, you are becoming part of the national conversation about local foods. Hundreds of grills will be fired up in backyards across the nation, however we will all be connected through social media in one big online BBQ to celebrate local food.

We’ll have more content to share with you over the coming weeks to get you ready for National BBQ Day. Bookmark the National BBQ Day blog and check out the Why Local and Resources (coming soon) sections for more information.

You can connect with us ahead of National BBQ Day by leaving a comment below or through Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram. Remember to use #NationalBBQDay and share the event with your friends and followers!


Napoleon Gourmet Grills