London

Bittersweet ending: Bakery shutting down after owners stop eating sweets

A popular London, Ont., bakery is shutting down because its owners say they feel guilty about selling sugary goodies to customers.

Chick Boss Cake is closing its doors for good after 12 years in business

couple
Rebecca and Chad Hamilton, co-owners of Chick Boss Cake, are closing their doors after 12 years in business. Rebecca says the main factor in their decision is guilt about selling unhealthy food. (Provided by Rebecca Hamilton)

A popular London, Ont. bakery is shutting down because its owners say they have started feeling guilty about selling sugar-loaded desserts to customers after undergoing a health transformation. 

After a dozen years in business, Chick Boss Cake has stopped accepting new orders for baked goods, said co-owner Rebecca Hamilton.

"It all boils down to the fact that we are not passionate about selling and promoting products that are terrible for your health," she said. "I don't even recognize the people who started the business that long ago because we've changed so much."

The chain of bakeries first opened 12 years ago by husband and wife team Chad and Rebecca Hamilton. Chick Boss Cakes had three locations — one in St. Thomas, one in Kitchener and one in Woodstock.

The London shop opened five years ago.

LISTEN | A popular local bakery is closing for a surprising reason

Former Owner of Chick Boss Cake Rebecca Hamilton joined London Morning to share her personal story of achieving better health. When she realized the baked goods she was selling were part of the problem she decided to close her business.

Business has been difficult in the past year partly because Hamilton put the brakes on all marketing and promotions. "I felt so guilty promoting cake and sugar to kids and families," she said.

Closing the business ultimately won't stop anyone from indulging in unhealthy sweets, Hamilton acknowledged, but said it's important to stop contributing to a business she no longer believes in. 

"It's the customers' decision and I'm sure they're going to go elsewhere for their desserts now, which is totally fine," Hamilton said. "I just don't feel comfortable in contributing to a greater problem."

closed bakery with bad weather
Chick Boss Cake London location at 222 Wellington Street. The bakery is closed for good. (Mike Lacasse/CBC News)

Hamilton said she began to make healthier changes in her life a few years ago after struggling with anxiety, depression and a myriad of health problems she believes were caused by her previous diet and lifestyle.

"I've seen my own health and wellness improve so much by cutting out sugar and processed foods and so my own experience is the 'icing on the cake' of witnessing the negative impact they have," she said. "I have way more energy now, I don't have a foggy brain anymore and I'm living my best life."

Shutting down Chick Boss Cake for good has been a bittersweet experience for the couple, especially after seeing the outpouring of support from customers when the closure was announced Facebook, Hamilton said. 

"It honestly just feels like a breakup that you know is the right decision but it's still really hard at the moment," she said. "I've cried and I've gone through all my own emotions about it but ultimately I know that it's the right decision for us."

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mike spent his early life in Northern Ontario and Quebec before making London his home. He is a graduate of Fanshawe's Broadcast Journalism program and lives in the city with his family and three cats.

with files from Andrew Brown

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