Nanaimo supplement store FUEL is looking to develop into more than just a supplement store.
Owner Dave McCammon opened FUEL with his partner on June 1 2007. McCammon said when they opened FUEL the main goal was to provide supplements directed towards the body building world. There was no desire to provide health food but rather just focus on sports nutrition.
McCammon said he got into body building when he was 11 years old living in Cranbrook and did it all wrong. McCammon said that he had body image issues which got him into body building and he was doing it all wrong. McCammon moved to Nanaimo where he said that from the age of 15-19 he was training 5-7 times a week.
McCammon said when the store first opened they filled only a quarter of it with product. McCammon had to take on a second job to be able to pay the bills while trying to keep FUEL afloat.
McCammon graduated from Malaspina with a BBA in Finance. McCammon said that it took three years before the store started making money.
McCammon said that while working at the store he started to get interested in health and wellness and started wanting to deal in more health related products than sports nutrition.
McCammon attended the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition in September 2011 where he is finishing up to become a Registered Holistic Nutritionist (RHN).
McCammon said he was focused a lot on dietary practices as both himself and others he was close to had suffered from certain digestive issues.
McCammon said the store is a reflection of his own background and bias but still offers a variety of alternatives for customers to choose from.
FUEL now carries a variety of both sports and nutrition supplements and organic health food and health related supplements.
McCammon hopes that by adding things such as herbs, grass fed bison and beef, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and natural sourced supplements, that the clientele may diversify more than it already has. McCammon says although they do not carry perishable foods right now he hopes that within the next year they will have enough people interested that it will be possible.
McCammon said that FUEL is working on creating the best experience for the customer possible. He said they are trying to stock better products opposed to many different ones. He said they also are expanding online and hoping to add an online store as well as an educational aspect helping people with advice, cooking tips, and nutritional basics.
McCammon said he hopes to have RHN’s in store to help people create dietary plans or do consultations to help get people going in the right direction.
McCammon said the idea now is to provide quality products and take a more holistic approach to helping customers find what it is that best suits their goals and needs.
McCammon said that FUEL is trying to pioneer a new front in sports nutrition by coming at it with a more natural and health conscious philosophy. McCammon said that his store removed one of their best selling products because of its use of hydrogenated oils.
McCammon said that due to the diversity of products the customers he sees now are different from when they first opened. He said originally it was almost entirely males in their twenties who came in and all looking to get bigger. Now, he said, the customers are close to 50% male and ages ranging from teenagers to one customer who is 96 years old.
McCammon said FUEL has always taken pride in their involvement with the community sponsoring both individual athletes and sports teams as well as making charitable donations.
FUEL is located at 440 2980 Island Highway North behind Earls Restaurant in Rock City plaza. For more information visit them on facebook or their website fuelsvnnanaimo.com. FUEL also offers discounts to VIU students.