Jaap Verbeke, General Manager of Portofino Bakery, began as an apprentice in Holland when he was 11 years old. After exploring other career paths, one of which led him to Canada, he returned to his childhood passion and opened a retail bakery in Broadmead Shopping Village in Victoria, BC. Soon customers were asking for larger quantities than the bakery could supply and in 2004 Portofino acquired a small wholesale bakery, and shifted its wholesale production to this 1800 sq ft location. It was at this time that Jaap joined forces with Ian and Wayne Fatt – local businessmen who are known for their involvement in the Red Barn Markets and Islands West produce. Within a year this space was too small and the bakery moved to a 6,000 sq ft location. In the fall of 2009, another 4000 sq ft were added to the existing floor space, bringing the total facility floor space to 10,000 sq ft. This space worked until January 2014, when Portofino moved into into its current location, a 15,275 sq ft space specifically designed to accommodate Portofino’s particular product lines.