Co-chairmen of Mother Parkers Tea & Coffee awarded Order of Canada
Co-Chairmen of Mother Parkers Tea & Coffee, Paul Higgins Jr. and Michael Higgins, have been appointed Members of the Order of Canada, the country’s highest civilian honor.
The Order was established in 1967 as a fellowship that recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation. Membership is awarded to those who exemplify the order’s Latin motto, “desiderantes meliorem patriam,” which means “they desire a better country.” In the past 50 years, only 7,000 people have been invested into the Order.
In announcing the Higgins brothers’ appointment to the Order, Governor General Julie Payette’s office stated: “Michael and Paul Higgins are renowned leaders and innovators in the food industry. Third generation co-chairmen of Mother Parkers Tea & Coffee, the brothers have expanded the business nine fold, distributing their products to every major retail grocery chain in North America. Respectful of the impacts of the industry on the environment, they launched a non-profit program, “Water Wise Coffee”. Discreet philanthropists, they have supported various community and national initiatives, both personally and through their company, for several decades.”
In learning of their appointment to the Order of Canada, Paul Higgins Jr. said: “I am shocked, thrilled, humbled and overwhelmed to be recognized by our great country and to join the ranks of a group of truly great contributors to Canada.”
Michael Higgins added: “This is an amazing honour to be given the Order of Canada and it is humbling to receive one of the highest awards in this great country that we love so much.”
Mother Parkers is a Canadian family-owned company and one of North America’s largest manufacturers and distributors of coffee and tea products. Paul and Michael Higgins are the third generation of the Higgins family to lead the business, which has grown from a small wholesale grocery distributor in Toronto in 1912 to a global industry leader that employees over 1,000 people in North America and supplies some of the world’s largest retailers, restaurants and brand owners. The brothers took over from their father as co-CEOs in 1993 and steered the business through periods of phenomenal growth, innovation and transformation. Earlier this year, they transitioned to the roles of co-chairmen of the Mother Parkers board of directors.