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BC-Made ‘Super-Food’ Chosen for Space Mission

This article by Justina Reichel originally appeared on September 26, 2012 in the The Epoch Times

Cereal that got its start on Dragon’s Den heads to Space Station

Brian and Corin Mullins at the Gibsons Factory

Brian and Corin Mullins at their operation in Gibsons, B.C. A cereal developed by the couple has been chosen as one of 12 Canadian foods to accompany Ontario-born astronaut Chris Hadfield on his upcoming space mission. A B.C. cereal made famous on hit TV show “Dragon’s Den” has been chosen to accompany Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on his upcoming mission to the International Space Station (ISS).

The cereal, named Holy Crap after a customer’s enthusiastic response upon tasting it for the first time, is one of 12 other Canadian snacks that will accompany Hadfield, scheduled to launch into space in December aboard a Russian Soyuz shuttle. The cereal was nominated in a Canadian Space Agency (CSA) contest that asked the public which foods would make the best regional snacks for Hadfield during his six-month mission. The food had to meet strict criteria to ensure that it was safe for astronauts in orbit. There are no refrigeration or freezer capabilities on the spacecraft; therefore, food needs to have a shelf life of at least one year.

Holy Crap was developed by husband-and-wife team Brian and Corin Mullins of Sechelt, B.C., who started their cereal company, HapiFoods Group Inc., three years ago.

‘Amazingly Healthy’ Corin says the cereal is ideal for space, as it was originally developed for emergency kits because of its healthy nutritional content and long shelf life. A person can survive for eight days eating only the cereal and water, the couple claims. “It’s an amazingly healthy product. We just got a video in this morning from someone who is going to run across the Sahara Desert in seven days eating our cereal,” says Brian.

Described by the company as a “concentrated super-food,” the vegan cereal contains a variety of natural and organic ingredients. It is also gluten-free and contains no lactose, sugar, salt or nuts.

The couple started selling their product on Vancouver’s Granville Island during the 2010 Winter Olympics. Their appearance on “Dragon’s Den” the same year is considered to be one of the most successful bids ever on the show. They immediately received an investment offer from Boston Pizza CEO Jim Treliving for “anything they want.” They turned down the offer but the publicity sent their business soaring. Today the couple have grown their business from two staff to 40, and distribute their products all over the world. “We’ve caught a wave,” says Brian.

Maple Syrup and Other Canadian Snacks

Hadfied met with NASA and CSA nutrition experts to design the menu for the expedition. His other Canadian snacks will include candied wild smoked salmon, cranberry buffalo stix, dried apple chunks, fruit bars, green tea cookies with orange zest, maple syrup cookies, organic chocolate, honey drops, and maple syrup. The treats will be delivered to the Space Station in multiple shipments.

“On a long-duration space mission, snacks can be a great morale booster,” Hadfield said in a CSA release. “Sharing this food will not only lift our spirits, but it will also give me the chance to tell the crew a little bit about the diversity and richness of the natural and cultural landscapes of Canada.”

During the second half of his six-month mission as part of the crew of Expedition 34/35, Hadfield will become the first Canadian commander of the ISS—a milestone for Canadian space exploration. In addition to overseeing operations as commander, he will carry out scientific experiments, operate Canadarm2, and perform various robotics tasks.

 

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