Celeste Trujillo, The Better Butchers, North Vancouver

North Vancouver
WeBC February 14, 2024

Combining her passion for food and nutrition, Celeste Trujillo started her career in food science at a startup that created dairy-free cheese. She found this work purposeful and intellectually challenging, sparking her interest in plant-based product innovation. When Celeste learned about new advancements in meat technology, she wanted to explore how to make her own products without animal cruelty. Along with her co-founder, she started The Better Butchers, specializing in cultivated meat, also known as lab-grown or cell-based meat.

The Better Butchers’ mission is to revolutionize the way meat is produced and consumed by offering a healthier, more environmentally friendly alternative to traditional livestock farming. Celeste has built a team of scientists, chefs, and sustainability experts dedicated to using science to produce nutritionally equivalent cultivated meat products.

As Celeste worked through the challenges of entrepreneurship, she was looking to connect with a community of like-minded people who understood business ownership. She found the Discovery Foundation’s Strategic Mindset Program through WeBC and joined, looking for support in overcoming challenges throughout the startup phase.

Celeste found that the atmosphere allowed the group to form strong bonds and share experiences. Having a confidential and understanding environment to discuss challenges was crucial for Celeste. These relationships had positive mental health benefits for her as she realized others were navigating similar challenges.

Looking towards the future, Celeste plans to leverage the skills learned from the program to grow her business. She’s interested in tapping into funding support from WeBC as her business enters the retail market. The Better Butchers products are coming soon, and Celeste looks forward to sharing what she creates with British Columbians.

Client Q&A

Q. What were you doing before The Better Butchers, and were you always interested in plant-based food?

A: I’ve always been interested in plant-based food because I love eating, but I was always more interested in the nutrition aspect of it. I became a food scientist to create products with a clean label so that I can feel good about eating it or knowing I can give it to my kids.

In my previous role creating dairy-free cheese, I enjoyed the creativity involved in working with plants and other ingredients. It was fulfilling being able to give people with allergies or dietary restrictions the experience of eating food they usually couldn’t. Sometimes I would see people crying tears of happiness when they would try the food. It’s not only about climate, or about making cool things, it’s about potentially changing people’s lives.

Q. Did you always see yourself becoming an entrepreneur?

A: Both my parents were entrepreneurs and I saw how hard they had to work, so it wasn’t something I initially wanted. But when I grew in my career I started noticing I wanted to do more and have decision-making power. 

When I was starting, it was scary, but I had the opportunity to start with a co-founder. I feel more confident now, especially with services like WeBC, because they support women like myself for us to be empowered.

Q. What important lessons did you learn taking the Discovery Foundation’s mentorship program from WeBC?

A: I’d say the main one is knowing that you’re not the only one who’s feeling all the stress that comes with starting a business and that it’s common for women. Initially, these feelings may seem like they aren’t grounded in anything, based solely on belief. However, when you see others facing the same challenges and overcoming them, it makes you feel like you can do it too.

Q. What was your favourite part of the program?

A: When I entered the entrepreneurial space, I didn’t know there would be so much support. It’s where I found that true community and true support, I am grateful for that. Realizing there are people who give out their time just to help others, like WeBC, it’s amazing.

Where to find The Better Butchers




About WeBC

WeBC is a not-for-profit that has been supporting women business owners across the province for over 25 years. Working with our regional partners, we’ve provided thousands of entrepreneurs with business loans and expertise, training, resources, and peer network support to help businesses grow and thrive.