A Scottish sweet manufacturer sees sales of its fudge and toffee surge in Iraq. What’s feeding that developing recognition? In northern Iraq, stores are speeding to fill their cabinets with candies. The Islamic holiday of Eid al-Adha, or Festival of the Sacrifice, is drawing close – and it’s far a crucial part of the year for confectionery businesses.
Like some other place in Iraqi Kurdistan, the 4-day pageant, which starts on Sunday, is a time for party and feasting – and goodies are very a great deal on the menu. That’s properly news for Sulaymaniyah-based businessman Farhad Haseeb, who sells confectionery to upmarket stores in Erbil and Dohuk, in addition to different towns and cities in the region.
“In our subculture, absolutely everyone buys very candy matters to provide to their visitors while they’re traveling their houses,” he says.
“Toffee is a very famous choice for Kurdish people, mainly at Ramadan and Eid.”
And families throughout Iraqi Kurdistan will be tucking into sweets that have been made 2, six hundred miles away in Scotland.
Greenock-based totally confectioner Golden Casket, which might be nicely-acknowledged in the UK for its Millions emblem, is one of Mr. Haseb’s principal international suppliers.
He first linked up with the Scottish enterprise several years ago at a confectionery exchange display. He ordered increasing amounts of its Halal-certified fudge, chocolate eclairs, and diverse toffees every 12 months.
Iraq is now Golden Casket’s third-largest export market, after America and Ireland.
The own family-owned firm produces about 70 tonnes of toffees, boilings, fudges, sweets, and chews per week.
So ways this yr, it has sent extra than 60 tonnes of its Buchanan’s emblem chocolates to the area.
So what’s behind the achievement of Scottish toffee in Iraqi Kurdistan?
“In our culture, eclairs and butter toffees are very famous,” says Mr. Haseb.
“We purchase them from Belgium and Poland, but Scottish toffee is pleasant – it’s miles chewier. We are promoting increasingly more each yr.”
Mr. Haseb, whose business enterprise Arak Garden imports greater than 200 tonnes of toffee and chocolate a 12 months, expects to area extra orders with Golden Casket this yr.
The Scottish agency, which is likewise recognized in the UK for its “One Pounders” bags, has made modifications to cater to the developing Iraqi market.
It currently hooked up new equipment to reinforce its chocolate eclair production potential.
The business enterprise has additionally been paying near interest to the packaging of merchandise for the Iraqi market.
Sales supervisor Stuart Rae explains: “Each jar of toffee or fudge has were given to be gold-wrapped – gold being a signal of great – and it has to be made inside the UK.
“That’s the excessive-end stuff for the Kurdish market in Iraq.”
Golden Casket’s dealing with director Crawford Rae, who’s additionally chairman of Greenock Morton Football Club, sees Iraq and the surrounding region as a “brilliant possibility.”
He says: “We exhibited in Dubai for the primary time in November – this is a rising marketplace and one which we need to interrupt into, and export is virtually a boom capacity for us.”
The Kurdish link is a welcome one for Golden Casket, particularly as the UK’s overall confectionery marketplace remains particularly flat in the interim.