Myths and Facts about GSI Shipping

As the first meat and seafood company in Canada to provide online ordering services to families across the country, we get our fair share of questions from customers who are not too familiar with our concept or the process that’s needed to make all parts of it possible. Whether it is about the quality or provenance of our products, to the shipping process, to the green-ness of the online shopping process, we love to address these questions and spread the news about Gourmet Secrets to our customers. By far and large, however, the number one question we receive is this one:

Why is there a shipping cost, and why is it so expensive?

And this is a good question- it’s important to know where your money is going! There are a lot of misconceptions surrounding this particular question, however, and we want to make sure you’re armed with accurate information on how the shipping works at Gourmet Secrets. Here’s one of the myths and facts about Gourmet Secrets shipping.

Myth: Shipping is always expensive when ordering from Gourmet Secrets.

Fact: Yes, shipping can be expensive- when you order only a few items. Every package from Gourmet Secrets comes in a styrofoam container and with enough dry ice to last until it arrives to your door, no matter if it’s 2 items or 20 items. We do not get these things for free: their price must be included in the cost of an order if we are to be able to grow as a company to serve you better. Smaller orders also tend to need somewhat more dry ice than larger orders to keep frozen for the same amount of time, since the lone items will thaw more quickly than an item surrounded by other frozen things. A larger order will thus have a lower shipping price per item than a small order, and since you are ordering fewer times, you don’t pay for more than one trip for your food!

Myth #2: We don’t pay shipping on purchases from a physical store.

Fact: You don’t see it, but it’s there: shipping costs in physical stores are usually included in an item’s price, as well as the costs that come with a physical location such as heating, electricity and employee wages: collectively, they are called “overhead”. Unless you purchase directly from a manufacturing plant, there is always a shipping cost included in the price of any item you purchase at a store, as it had to travel from that plant to the retailer which now stocks your items. The overhead is a smaller portion of the price of larger stores due to the sheer quantity of items they purchase at one time, while in smaller butcher shops, the overhead can make a real difference in the price of the meat. At Gourmet Secrets, you get a store that’s accessible 24/7 without needing to pay for the heating and electricity costs associate with a physical store- and you get it sent straight from the plant to your house, with no need to use extra gas to go to the store, in an easy and convenient way!

Myth #3: Gourmet Secrets makes money off the shipping cost.

Fact: Contrary to what you might think, Gourmet Secrets is also charged shipping for all outgoing orders! The shipping solutions offered by UPS ensure that we can deliver your food right to your doorstep without you needing to sign for the package- this also means employing the services of that external courier company, which charges a shipping cost to both person and business. The shipping charges on your order are thus part of the total cost of purchase from us. We know that having our customers pay for the entirety of our premium shipping and packaging wouldn’t be very fair, though- that’s why we help reduce the shipping cost as much as we can so we can bring it down to the very reasonable rates we have now.

The delivery of our food straight to your doorstep is part and parcel (no pun intended) of the Gourmet Secrets concept- and so is the delicious food that we are proud to bring to you with convenience and at great value. You can shop from Gourmet Secrets with confidence that every penny you spend with us helps us grow and serve you better.


SQF and You: Making the Right Choices

Seafood comes from the ocean. And some kinds of seafood are only found in certain parts of the ocean. So far, this is pretty obvious: you won’t find Jumbo Black Tiger Prawns, Chilean Seabass and Digby Giant Scallops in the same place, right? But how do Canadians ensure that all of their seafood adheres to the same high standards of quality, if it is coming from so many different places in the world? The answer is SQF: Safe Quality Food, a global food safety standard that ensures all of your fish and seafood from Gourmet Secrets is of the highest quality!

Food safety? Check.Specifically, all Gourmet Secrets fish and seafood products are SQF Level 2 certified. What does that mean for you?

First, it is the most stringent standard for food safety in Canada. To be SQF Level 2 certified, all seafood and fish that are processed by our federal plant must fall within acceptable quality standards set out not only by the SQF scheme itself, but also the HACCP approach to dealing with risks and hazards. In our case, every item that contains seafood in some shape or form must have all its ingredients undergo the food safety protocol. Every incoming shipment of product to our federal plant is tested against the SQF Level 2 standards for criteria such as color, humidity, heavy metals and undesirable preservative and contaminant contents: if even one item in the shipment does not fall within these standards, it is sent back in its entirety. That’s how strict it is- and how important your health and the quality of your food is to us.

Second, it is globally recognized. The SQF Level 2 certification is recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative, an international non-profit organization of food safety experts and industry leaders that sets the standard for the best food safety practices in world food industry. Our seafood’s quality is backed up by the hundreds and thousands of people who have collaborated with one another to ensure that the SQF Level 2 standard is one of the very best worldwide.

Consequently, by purchasing your seafood from Gourmet Secrets, you are guaranteed to have the best quality product, free of contaminants and preservatives, good for your health and full of wholesome ocean flavor. Why wait any longer? Order your favorite fish and seafood selections today!

The Truth About Gourmet Secrets

Since 2011, Gourmet Secrets has operated exclusively online to bring to all Canadians the very best in gourmet meats and seafood. During that time, we have partnered with group deal websites such as Groupon, Dealfind, TeamBuy, Buytopia, Tuango, LivingSocial, MadDeal, DealGetters, SwarmJam and others in order to reach out to our customers and offer extra value for their purchases with us. The deals we featured on those websites and others were created in such a way as to be sustainable for Gourmet Secrets in the long run, to ensure that even with great value offered to our customers, we would be able to not only survive, but grow even more to serve them better. Because of this design, however, individuals with limited budgets or who wanted a different kind of offer with no strings attached found themselves disappointed or frustrated by our deals, and have in turn expressed this by calling us a scam.

In light of this, it is very important for us to be clear:

We are not a scam.

We value your patronage with Gourmet Secrets. We have built this company from long-term, trustworthy relationships with our customers, the highest-quality food the world has to offer, and convenient, easy service from the time of ordering to the time of delivery.  When you make an order, everything is inspected and placed in your container by hand, to ensure the quality of your food is at its best and your order is complete, and we have never offered a special or an order that purposefully includes less than what is advertised (Mistakes do happen though, and if your order is missing anything, our 100% Satisfaction Guarantee will take care of you!). Like any special offered in almost any other store, there are conditions on our coupons which are put in place to ensure that we can sustain the deal and provide for every customer who orders with it. We attempt to make these conditions as clear as possible in our deal, though the final layout of the conditions is up to the company with which we are partnering at the time. We always recommend for prospective customers to give us a call if they have trouble with the way any of our deals work, and we can answer all their questions quickly and easily.

A scam involves dishonest business practices or promises made that do not add up to what you actually receive. We cannot promise to plan our deal in a way that doesn’t allow us to grow as a company, nor can we promise to give free food to people without paying for it.
We do promise to deliver the very best in gourmet foods to you in a courteous and convenient manner, at great value. We promise as well that if an item you receive is not up to your standards, we will take all possible measures to correct that and make you happy. We promise a deal that gives you extra value for your purchase, a deal that is good for you and good for us too. Again and again, our satisfied customers have expressed their delight in the food and service they have received from us, through Facebook, email and over the phone.

In the end, our campaign with group deals has been very successful, with over 50,000 vouchers sold nationwide and over $1,000,000 redeemed by our customers through their coupons since. This much saving on the best food available for Canadians nationwide- now that is something to be excited about!

Shipping your order

Part of Gourmet Secrets’ time-saving concept is the delivery of your order right to your doorstep: without needing to wait or sign for the package, you can go about your day in confidence that your order will find its way to your door on time!

Your GSI order, ready to be shipped!

Your GSI order, ready to be shipped!

After you make an order, the first step of the delivery process is the confirmation call! This process is important to ensure that the order goes to the correct address, as well as gives us the opportunity to answer any questions or write down any special instructions you might have for your order. Without a telephone confirmation of your address, your order cannot be shipped out, so plan a time within 48 hours after you make your order that we’ll be able to reach you in order to quickly confirm the order.Dry ice- keeps everything frozen in transit!

The second step is, of course, the delivery itself! On the day your order goes out, it is packaged in a styrofoam container with dry ice to ensure your food remains frozen at a temperature of less than -70 degrees Celsius! At the same time, a UPS shipping label is applied to your order, with a tracking number you will receive in your email so you can follow your package on its journey. Gourmet Secrets partners with UPS to ensure that your order is delivered in a timely manner, right to your doorstep, without your needing to sign it. This also allows us to ship everywhere in Canada, from Whitehorse to Halifax and anywhere in between!

Once your order arrives, the last step is to unpack it, place it in your freezer, and get ready to enjoy the best in gourmet steaks, chicken and other selections, right at home, for less than $3.99 a serving!

For your health!

In this day and age, it’s more important than ever for consumers to be vigilant about what they buy, especially when it comes to their food. Not even two months ago, the Mother Nature Network published an article detailing common “counterfeit foods”- that is, foods that are labelled as something they are not, a list that includes olive oil, blueberries, and even milk and fish. And the World Cancer Research Fund recently completed a review of over 7,000 different research articles looking at links between diet and cancer, and came to a startling conclusion: meats that are heavily-processed in order to improve their color are too dangerous for human consumption!

In light of all this, what makes shopping at Gourmet Secrets a better choice for your health?

Gourmet Secrets products always contain exactly what the label says. Our high quality standards guarantee that no fillers, thinners or substitutes are used in our products. We take special care with our fish products, which are at highest risk of being passed off as different species entirely, to make sure that the name matches the fish. This ensures that you get exactly what you pay for when you purchase from Gourmet Secrets.

In addition, Gourmet Secrets products are 100% natural: in particular, our selection of meats and seafood is raised in a natural environment with room for movement and growth, and guaranteed to be free of inorganic feed supplements, additives to enhance color or hormones. Our wild fish is exactly that: wild-caught and immediately flash-frozen to lock in its ocean freshness. And our prepared items are made with only natural ingredients, which are easily available under the product information when you select one on our website.

The World Cancer Research Fund review notes that “[the] cancer risks [outlined in their review] do not come from eating fresh, non-processed meats.” This is exactly what Gourmet Secrets prides itself in: healthy, high-quality meats that haven’t been processed to artificially enhance their color at the expense of your health.

We stand by the quality of our products with our 100% satisfaction guarantee, because that is what Gourmet Secrets is all about: providing the very best in gourmet foods for you and your family. We believe that good food is measured by the quality and wholesomeness of the ingredients, and that Canadians deserve only the best food they can get.

Your satisfaction is guaranteed when you buy from Gourmet Secrets online. So why wait? Order today!

What is the Gourmet Secrets Concept?

One of our Facebook fans submitted this great picture of their son watching dry ice from a Gourmet Secrets order make smoke in a glass of water.

“I don’t know if this counts, but my son gets super-excited when a new shipment comes in and we “play” with the dry ice!! Mom loves that she is feeding him natural free range chicken which is a much healthier option and pretty much the same price as most supermarket meat. our favorite meal is chicken fajitas but I have no pics b/c we eat it too fast.”
– Tammy Main, Facebook fan

Shopping with Gourmet Secrets- what makes the difference? What does the Gourmet Secrets’ online shopping experience offer for you and your family?

It’s convenient.

With Gourmet Secrets, you can select your favorite meat and seafood selections from the comfort of your home. Spending the whole day at work, only to take an extra hour or two to stop by the grocery store or the butcher to pick up your food before finally heading home? Cut out the time you spend driving to the butcher or traipsing through the supermarket aisles looking for your favorite products for your family: instead, plop down on the couch with your spouse or sit down at the kitchen with your family, and make a Gourmet Secrets order in less than 15 minutes. Within 10 days, you’ll get it delivered right to your doorstep, with no need to even be home to sign for the box: all you have to do is open it up, put your order in the freezer, and cook some delicious food for your family! The best part? Gourmet Secrets’ online store is open 24/7, so you don’t have to wait until morning to make an order. All of this means that you have more free time in your day for activities, projects and most importantly, your family. And who doesn’t need more free time these days? That’s what the convenience of Gourmet Secrets can do for you.

It’s easy.

The Gourmet Secrets online store is made to be easy to access and use: from our product categories and shipping information, to our savings calculator and online payment options, when you make an order online, we’re here to help you every step of the way. Informative pop-ups and interactive images let you know about opportunities to save and any specials currently ongoing, and our user account system ensures that we can pinpoint your order from the moment you make it to the time of delivery. And if you have any questions, our knowledgeable and friendly customer service staff are always ready at the phones to answer any of your questions- simply dial our toll-free number, 1-877-254-0222, and be connected immediately for any help you need, from a simple question to placing your order for you! It’s just that easy.

It’s fun!

We live in a shopping world. We buy our clothes, our toys and our food: there’s no reason we can’t have fun doing so! Our online shopping experience delivers just that: an occasion for the family to come together and have fun picking out their order, planning ahead for the kinds of meals and events they’ll be having over the next month: neighborhood barbecues, family dinners, wholesome family suppers, you name it! Receiving your Gourmet Secrets order is the best time of all: bring the kids over to help unwrap the box like a Christmas gift and have the first look at your order! Within hours of receiving your order, you’ll be barbecuing delicious Gourmet Secrets steak for the whole family to sit down around the table and enjoy together.

It’s simply the best, at great value.

You and your family deserve to eat the best food you can get. From our AAA Alberta beef, free-range chicken, delicious pork and lean bison, to our wild fish and natural seafood, gourmet specialties and delectable desserts, we pride ourselves on the quality of our products. Our online store provides information on all of our products so you can shop with confidence that what you see will be what you get. Our huge variety brings you choices for every occasion: heat-and-eat meals such as our Country Style Chicken Pieces, Fully-Cooked Lamb Shank in Sauce and Natural Crab Cakes; raw ingredients for your favorite recipes like Extra Lean Beef Cubes, Chicken Breast Fillets, Pork Tenderloin and Pacific Pink Salmon Portions; we have something to please everyone in the family for every occasion. Flash-frozen, vacuum-packaged meal-sized portions ensure that the quality of each and every piece in your order is as good as it can be, and that you can plan your meals easily. And to top it all off, Gourmet Secrets offers all these prime selections for $3.99 or less per serving- less than a Big Mac! We think the very best food in the world shouldn’t cost you an arm and a leg: that’s why we work hard to bring you great specials and promotions that allow you to enjoy Gourmet Secrets products at great value.

Your meat and seafood shopping experience should be convenient, easy, fun and valuable. Gourmet Secrets’ online concept saves you time, makes shopping fun, and gives you the very best in gourmet meats and seafood at an affordable price. So what are you waiting for? Make an order with Gourmet Secrets today!

What’s the deal with our coupons?

For the last two years, Gourmet Secrets has been partnering with TeamBuy, Groupon, Dealfind and other group deal websites to bring our special value coupons to customers. But what exactly are those coupons?

Gourmet Secrets’ primary focus centers around our high-quality gourmet products. We spare no expense to ensure that we provide only the best to our customers. The $50 special value coupons offered through our group deals are a way to create better value with an order through a discount that is good for you and good for Gourmet Secrets!

Our coupons provide great value to our customers in a way that is sustainable for Gourmet Secrets. We are not the first meat and seafood company to provide a deal with group buy websites, and in the past, other similar businesses had to close their doors because of a poorly-planned deal that was very good for customers, but unsustainable for said businesses in the long run.

Gourmet Secrets coupons are specifically designed to be used as an additional, interesting discount off an existing purchase, and cannot be used to get an order completely free, as this is not sustainable for us in the long run. In order to keep giving the very best in gourmet foods to our customers, our deals must allow us to survive and grow. However, we still want you to be able to enjoy Gourmet Secrets meat, seafood and specialties for $3.99 or less per serving!

Unlike most coupons offered by businesses, Gourmet Secrets coupons are usable with other promotions on our website! The most well-known example of this, of course, is our 8-item promo, where picking 8 items or more on our website will allow you to save over $110 on your order: adding in a coupon to this bumps up the savings to over $160! And right now, our Specials of the Day are eligible for combining with our discount coupons as well!

We want to make sure you get the best value for your dollar to enjoy gourmet foods with your family and friends: the Gourmet Secrets special value coupons help us make that happen for you!