Markus and Ursula Jaeger of Inspired Breads stand with what’s left of their home-baked goods after a busy morning at their booth in the Downtown Salmon Arm Farmers Market on Saturday, July 6. (Lachlan Labere/Salmon Arm Observer)

Master bakers leave big city success to find inspiration in the Shuswap

Markus and Ursula Jaeger embrace community of Salmon Arm and opportunities it provides

Life in Salmon Arm has become a source of inspiration for Markus and Ursula Jaeger, the artisan bakers behind Inspired Breads.

On Saturday mornings, the couple can be found working side by side in their booth at the Downtown Salmon Arm Farmer’s Market, busy selling their home-baked goods – hearty loafs of ancient grain breads, pretzels, baguettes, cookies and more.

“It feels like the people love what they’re seeing or what they got the week before so we have a lot of returning customers at the moment,” said a delighted Markus. “And a lot of people bringing two or three other people to the booth and saying, ‘That’s the bread we got last weekend.’ And you see that word of mouth happening right away and it’s just a wonderful thing to witness.”

Markus loves being able to interact directly with customers while sharing time with Ursula and their four children. It’s part of a radical lifestyle change the Jaegers recently undertook after selling their successful Lower Mainland bakery of 13 years, The Artisan Bake Shoppe.

“We love to work together and you know, with the growing bakery back in Vancouver, we were more parted because I took care of the night and my wife took care of the day…,” explained Markus. “We love to work together. And being in that position right now again, where we stand by by side, even selling the bread together, it’s amazing for me.”

Markus discovered his passion for baking while pursuing a different career path in Germany. He was studying computer science and economics in university when he took a job at a bakery. After a couple of weeks of watching how bread is made, Markus realized he’d found his calling. The news came as a surprise to his parents and friends.

Read more: Shuswap farm family raise following on Instagram

Read more: Dancing with Shuswap Stars attracts Rust Valley Restorers

“It was a shock,” laughs Markus. “In Germany, baking is a very low thing to start. If you start in an apprenticeship as a baker, a lot of people really ask, ‘oh, you couldn’t find anything else?’ I don’t think the same. I really think it’s a wonderful profession…

“That’s a difference from Canada. When you come with a trade, like being a butcher or a baker, the mindset is completely different because they somehow like that you’re going back to the roots of something, or that you have a really good education in a specialty field.”

Markus met Ursula in Germany when the two were pursuing their masters degrees in baking. She had already established a reputation as a baker, and the two found they shared the same passion for, and philosophies around baking.

“We both had the same mindset, that we wanted to go back to the roots of baking, and that’s what we’re doing,” said Markus.

Read more: New Saturday farmer’s market to offer taste of the Shuswap

Read more: Cosmetic line earns top honours in Launch-a-Preneur

In 2003, the Jaegers moved to Canada and, in 2004, they were given an opportunity to take ownership of the Artisan Bake Shoppe. Their traditional approach to bread making became a recipe for success, and supermarkets began asking to carry their product. Though the Jaegers were doing what they loved, the stress of maintaining a growing business began taking its toll and, when Ursula developed myositis, an inflammation of the muscles, they made the decision to sell.

The Jaegers discovered the Shuswap during a trip to the Kootenays, immediately falling in love with the geography. After selling the bakery, the family moved to Salmon Arm.

“Taking care of the whole thing was too much and we are so glad that the whole situation with my wife has changed,” said Markus, explaining how the transition has been. “She’s healthy here, she doesn’t have any signs of what she had before and just by taking the stress off and working side-by-side again, for us it’s a second chance in life.”

Markus and Inspired Breads was one of the competitors in this year’s Launch-a-Preneur competition, and he will be taking part in this year’s Dancing with the Shuswap Stars.

“The whole year feels like being connected with the community and it really feels great being a part of Salmon Arm now. It’s amazing,” said Markus.


@SalmonArm
newsroom@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Markus and Ursula Jaeger of Inspired Breads stand with what’s left of their home-baked goods after a busy morning at their booth in the Downtown Salmon Arm Farmers Market on Saturday, July 6. (Lachlan Labere/Salmon Arm Observer)

Just Posted

LETTER: Questions raised about Summerland property taxes

Dear Editor: By now property owners in Summerland will have received their… Continue reading

COLUMN: Is parliament essential?

We need time to dig into the books and ensure that taxpayers are being respected

Heads up, it’s fawning season in Penticton

Baby deer seen frolicking through downtown Penticton Wednesday afternoon

Penticton RCMP express concern over allowing public drinking

RCMP said they expressed their concern to the city but will do their best ensure safety

WATCH: North Okanagan golf cart stolen, then returned

Homeowners have footage of two men taking the cart and then bringing it back

Police watchdog investigating fatal crash in Kelowna

Kelowna RCMP received a report of a single-vehicle collision on Bulman Road near Highway 97 on June 1

Kelowna council greenlights ‘The Wedge’

The wedge-shaped building will be built at the corner of Leon Avenue and Water Street

Vehicle stolen in Revelstoke recovered near Salmon Arm after occupants suffer overdoses

Police say they were alerted to the vehicle after occupants treated by ambulance after drug use

Province looks to seize Kelowna home owned by alleged drug trafficker

Michelle Collins and Nigel Byrne were also recently investigated by Kelowna RCMP for drug trafficking

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

John Horgan says COVID-19 restrictions won’t be eased regionally

B.C. Liberals urge ‘tailored’ response based on infections

Highway 1 closed after body found near Hope

Coroners Service reportedly on the scene, highway has been closed for 10 hours in both directions

Feds get failing grade for lack of action plan on anniversary of MMIWG report

‘Instead of a National Action Plan, we have been left with a Lack-of-Action Plan’

Most Read