Austin Kurtis, 5, left, and his big sister Ella, 10, of Levack, Ont., helped create a 240-kilogram (530-pound) Nanaimo bar for a Guinness World Records attempt. (Photo submitted)

Austin Kurtis, 5, left, and his big sister Ella, 10, of Levack, Ont., helped create a 240-kilogram (530-pound) Nanaimo bar for a Guinness World Records attempt. (Photo submitted)

Ontario chocolatier tries for world record with 500-pound Nanaimo bar

Fudge maker from Levack, Ont., and her children await word if Guinness will make record official

The world’s first biggest Nanaimo bar record attempt is drawing attention to a small Ontario town.

Chantelle Gorham, owner of Northwest Fudge Factory in Levack, Ont., and her two children Ella Kurtis, 10 and Austin Kurtis, 5, have created the world’s biggest Nanaimo bar for the Science of Guinness World Records exhibit at Science North, a science museum in nearby Sudbury.

The museum asked Gorham to participate because of her previous world records and record attempts. Gorham is the current Guinness World Record holder for creating the largest slab of fudge that tilted the scales at more than 2,600 kilograms (5,750 pounds) and she had actually put in a request with Guinness World Records in 2016 to create a category for a world’s largest Nanaimo bar.

“So we thought, yeah, we could probably bring fudge and sit at a table, but I thought this might be a good time to force ourselves just to finish this project,” Gorham said.

She found a recipe that was simple to make and could be stored, transported and displayed and remain edible. To ensure she got the right ingredient ratios, she bought a President’s Choice Nanaimo bar mix and scaled up the ingredients, which were laid into a large form on wheels so it could be moved and sealed.

READ ALSO: U.K. press wonders if Nanaimo bars lured Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to Canada

The Nanaimo bar then had to be weighed as a whole according to Guinness rules. Northwest Fudge Factory’s record attempt at the world’s biggest peanut butter cup was rejected because the ingredients were weighed separately instead of as a whole peanut butter cup.

“So that’s kind of a new thing for us,” Gorham said. “All of a sudden we had to move this thing to a commercial scale and have it weighed, which wasn’t bad because it was only 500 pounds, but our fudge record was almost 6,000 pounds … it got moved around quite a bit, unfortunately, but it held up just fine. It was like the perfect dessert to be manhandled.”

Gorham and her children laid down the base of the Nanaimo bar the night of March 4. The children poured the middle custard before they went to school the next morning and poured the top when they came home that night. The Nanaimo bar was transported to Science North on Friday to be weighed, put on display and cut up for sale.

“It was about a 48-hour process from start to finish,” Gorham said.

The final product weighed more than 240kg (530 pounds). Guinness World Records specified a minimum weight of 200kg (441 pounds) for the world’s first biggest Nanaimo bar record attempt.

READ ALSO: Nanaimo bar stamp makes it into Nanaimo Museum

READ ALSO: Tourism Nanaimo invites celebrities to sample ‘real’ Nanaimo bars

Gorham said the entire Nanaimo bar sold over the weekend, thanks in part to the residents of Onaping-Levack, a rural area of Sudbury with a population of about 2,000, who turn out to support her, whether she’s working on a world record attempt or community activism, such as taking up the fight to prevent a school closure.

As for the big Nanaimo bar, its status as the world’s largest remains as yet unofficial and it’s possible the attempt might not meet Guinness approval, which Gorham said is extremely specific in its requirements.

“Everything has been submitted … they’ve become so particular, right down to the food distribution. They want to prove that you didn’t just throw it out and you weren’t wasteful about it … in a way I’m kind of thinking my application may be rejected on the fact that I chose to do one without an egg, obviously, because it wasn’t being baked,” she said. “So you’re always waiting for the other shoe to drop, but it is a no-bake [recipe]. It doesn’t have any egg and I had to explain to the best of my ability that it wasn’t an option.”

Gorham, who started Northwest Fudge Factory about 20 years ago after leaving the Greater Sudbury Police Service, expects the record, if it does get approved, might not stand long once word gets out the world’s largest Nanaimo bar isn’t in Nanaimo.

“I did tell my kids, I said, you have to expect that somebody from Nanaimo will be offended and they’ll break our record and we’re just going to be very happy for them,” she said. “This isn’t a record we want to keep defending.”

READ ALSO: Nanaimo bars served at White House state dinner

READ ALSO: McDonald’s introduces Nanaimo bar McFlurry

READ ALSO: Vancouver Island Brewing puts Nanaimo bar on tap



photos@nanaimobulletin.com
Like us on
Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Food and Drink

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

Just Posted

The Men’s Centre in Nanaimo, with help of volunteers and with the support of local businesses and other donors, was able to complete a renovation project at the Fitzwilliam Street office. (Photos submitted)
Renovations raise spirits at Nanaimo’s men’s centre

Non-profit organization thanks volunteers and donors

A conceptual drawing of ‘complete streets’ work on Front Street in downtown Nanaimo. (McElhanney image)
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Bike lanes help cyclists enjoy a safer commute

Bicycles aren’t taking up more than their share of the road, says letter writer

AstraZeneca vaccine is becoming available at B.C. pharmacies outside the Lower Mainland, as of Friday, April 9. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Frank Augstein
Immunization program expands to five Nanaimo pharmacies

Residents 55-65-year-old can get their first dose of AstraZeneca vaccine

Nanaimo RCMP are asking for the public’s help in identifying the man suspected of being involved in a stabbing. (Photo submitted)
Nanaimo RCMP trying to identify stabbing suspect who wielded rusty knife

Stabbing followed argument between two men at Port Place Shopping Centre April 1

A 3.0-magnitude earthquake occurred off Ucluelet just after 12:30 a.m. on April 10 and was reportedly felt as far south as Oregon. (Map via United States Geological Survey)
Quake off Ucluelet reportedly felt as far south as Oregon

Magnitude 1.5 earthquake also reported off Vancouver Island’s west coast hours earlier

First responders were on scene of a motor vehicle incident and confrontation on Wallace Street in Nanaimo the morning of April 10. (Karl Yu/News Bulletin)
Youth arrested after car crash in Nanaimo

Ford pickup sustained rear driver’s-side damage in crash near Nanaimo’s Old City Quarter

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod, seen here on April 9, 2021 with four-year-old sister Elena and mom Vanessa, was born with limb differences. The family, including husband/dad Sean McLeod, is looking for a family puppy that also has a limb difference. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. family looking for puppy with limb difference, just like 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy McLeod born as bilateral amputee, now her family wants to find ‘companion’ puppy for her

A vehicle that was driven through the wall of a parkade at Uptown Shopping Centre and into the nearby Walmart on April 9 was removed through another hole in the wall later that night. (Photo via Saanich Police Department and Ayush Kakkar)
Vehicle launched into B.C. Walmart removed following rescue of trapped workers

Crews cut new hole in parkade wall to remove vehicle safely

As of Saturday, April 10, people born in 1961 are the latest to be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. (Black Press files)
B.C. residents age 60+ can now register to get their COVID-19 vaccine

Vaccine registration is now open to people born in 1961 or earlier

The inside of the Campbell River Community Centre gymnasium has been marked off in order to facilitate the public flowing through the clinic as they receive their COVID-19 vaccination. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell river Mirror
Leftover vaccines go into arms, not down the drain: Island Health

Immunization plan comes with built-in options for any unused vaccines at the end of the day

A man was arrested after getting angry because Nanaimo RCMP would not return a shovel he had allegedly been swinging around. (File photo)
Man arrested after objecting to Nanaimo RCMP confiscating shovel he had been swinging around

Police say it was in the public interest not to return the tool to allegedly impaired suspect

Don Bonner, RDN board director, left, Tyler Brown, RDN board chairperson, and Sean De Pol, RDN director of water and wastewater services, at a ribbon cutting ceremony at the Greater Nanaimo Pollution Control Centre April 6. (Shawn Wagar photo)
Nanaimo’s $82-million pollution control centre upgrade now complete

Wastewater treatment enhanced at RDN’s Greater Nanaimo Pollution Control Centre

A new saline gargle test, made in B.C., will soon be replacing COVID-19 nasal swab tests for kids. (PHSA screenshot)
Take-home COVID-19 tests available for some B.C. students who fall ill at school

BC Children’s Hospital plans to provide 1,200 kits to Vancouver district schools this April

Four members with Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans were out at Cultus Lake on March 28 and 29 hauling trash out of the waters. (Henry Wang)
PHOTOS: Out-of-town divers remove 100s of pounds of trash from Cultus Lake

Members of Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans hauled out 470 pounds of trash over two days

Most Read