After a week of international protests in response to the police killing of George Floyd and racial injustice, people continue to take a stand and fight, reigniting the Black Lives Matter movement. Use your voice and stand by the black community. Along with protesting, donating, and using your platforms to elevate black voices, you can also help by putting your money towards black-owned businesses that are now being affected more than ever and were already facing the economic consequences of COVID-19.
Afrobiz.ca is a website directory of black-owned businesses all over Canada. The businesses include retailers, restaurants, health and fitness programs, salons, art galleries and much more. There are places from Toronto to Saskatoon to Nova Scotia to many more spots across the country. (Those in the 6ix can also check out blackowned.to and this ever-expanding Google doc of businesses owned by black people in the city.)
Here’s a categorized list of some black-owned Canadian businesses that deserve your support.
Pam's Roti Shop
This beloved roti shop in Toronto's Bloordale neighbourhood recently appealed to the public to help keep it open, saying their landlord refused to apply for the federal rent subsidy offered during COVID-19. In a Facebook post, they've asked customers to email or call the landlord directly. Their boneless goat roti is one of the best in the city, so they must be protected at all costs.
Aunty Lucy's Burger Shop
This burger joint in Toronto's Parkdale area just opened up in the middle of a pandemic, but they've been selling out early every day. Clearly they're serving some heat. Their secret ingredient: the Lucy's sauce.
Baccanalle takes a refreshing twist on contemporary and traditional Caribbean and soul food. They offer catering, private dining and prepared meals with vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, diabetic-sensitive, and low sodium options, so there’s something for everyone to enjoy!
PG’s Jamaican Restaurant
PG’s Jamaican Restaurant is a traditional Jamaican restaurant based in White Rock, B.C. Try some of the best Jerk Chicken, Oxtail, and rum cake here for an authentic homestyle experience.
The Nutmeg Spot
Run by a husband and wife duo, the nutmeg Spot brings a taste of Grenada to you. They offer authentic Grenadian-style food, pastries, beverages through catering, food delivery, and personal chef services.
Ocean Spice Co.
Want to recreate Caribbean flavours right at home? Ocean Spice Co offers a variety of hot sauces, BBQ sauces, jerk sauces and dry rubs that you can use to indulge in your very own cooking creations.
Get Fresh Company
This Toronto streetwear brand and boutique is responsible for some of the city's hardest drips. Owner Jebril "Fresh" Jalloh has had the vision for the store since he was 15. It would go on to be one of the first Toronto brands to collaborate with PUMA.
Atelier New Regime
This Montreal streetwear brand began selling T-shirts out their trunks. Now they're one of the hottest labels in the country, known for their boundary-pushing aesthetic and cavalier use of the colour orange.
Canada's only black-owned skate shop, Adrift has been at it for over a decade, carrying a wide array of streetwear and skate brands from around the world.
Exclucity founder Trent Out Loud got his start selling T-shirts and durags out of the trunk of his car in Montreal. Now his boutique has several locations across the city, as well as one very popular one in Toronto.
Toronto-based clothing brand MASK specializes in men and women’s streetwear. Their clothing captures the essence of Toronto and what the culture is all about. Make sure to check out their graphic print T-shirts and pins for your next outfit.
If there’s anything that can be easily added to an outfit for a pop of colour or personality, it’s socks. Kyso offers a variety of super comfortable socks with vibrant and exciting patterns that’ll make a great addition to your sock drawer.
Offering the best of Western and African heritage, this brand merges the two to create unique fashion and home décor items. Find everything from headbands to pillow cases here.
Nuff Love Apparel
Nuff Love is a Toronto-based clothing brand that offers high quality, comfortable tracksuits. They’ll bring a slick and contemporary twist to your wardrobe with a message of uniting everyone.
If you’re looking to add a touch of inspired black pop-art flair to your living space that’s created to empower, M.Falconer is the shop for you. It has everything from a Rihanna print to Women of Wakanda stickers that you can add to your laptop.
Through his art, Reynold Thomas deconstructs the female identity and body. His work celebrates women’s bodies and you can buy his inspiring abstract prints on his site.
Black Sun Comics
If you’re into superheroes, this one’s for you. Black Sun Comics creates African-centered science fiction and fantasy comics and graphic novels—also known as Afrofuturism. Add this one to your reading list so you can delve into the exciting world of Black Sun.
Go + Glow Co.
Go + Glow is a Brampton-based beauty and wellness company that offers skincare and cosmetics for all skin types and tones. Their aim is to help women feel their best and find their inner glow through their natural, vegan selection of products.
Ellie Bianca is an all-natural, vegan, environmentally sustainable, socially conscious skincare line based in Alberta. Check out their face oils, serums, and bath salts for a luxury self-care experience.
Ignite Counselling Services
Ignite offers counselling services and virtual support for the black community in the Greater Toronto Area. Although, this one is a service, it’s an important one to highlight as Ignite hopes to empower Black individuals to be vocal about their mental health challenges.