Chef Karen McAthy

A born and bred west coaster from Alert Bay, BC, Chef Karen McAthy has worked in and around kitchens since 2000. Her interest in and passion for local food systems and growing food was well established in her previous posts as director of food services at W2 Media Arts, executive chef of Graze Vegetarian (now closed), and Zend Conscious Lounge. Karen left Zend in July 2016 to pursue plant-based cheese making, catering, and teaching classes with her company, Blue Heron Creamery. A published author, Karen’s first book, The Art of Plantbased Cheesemaking was published with New Society Publishers, spring 2017.

With both parents coming from agricultural backgrounds, Karen grew up learning how to grow food, and being curious about the wild plants in the woods of her home island. A deep desire to learn and understand how things work informs Karen’s pursuit of making plantbased food and her ongoing interest in culturing processes. Her academic background in political science and biology finds itself present in her daily work as a chef as she brings a focus on the various ecological and ethical issues readily present in the food industry.

To find out more about Karen, see

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