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pledged of £7,500
Radfords Fine Fudge – launch of new Fairtrade Confectionery Join us on our journey to launch a new range of Radfords Fairtrade fudge flavours
We will use Fairtrade sugars and Fairtrade syrups to make a unique range of Fairtrade fudge and confectionery products – Fairtrade Cane Rum fudge, Fairtrade Madagascan Vanilla fudge, Fairtrade Salted Caramel Fudge, Fairtrade crunchy honeycomb.
Fairtrade changes the way trade works through better prices, decent working conditions and a fairer deal for farmers and workers in developing countries.
Radfords Fine Fudge has been making award winning fudge and confectionery for nearly 10 years. We are really excited about our latest project which our artisan confectioners have been working on – we want to launch a brand new and exciting range of Fairtrade confectioneries.
This Fairtrade range will be homestyle in appearance ie hand broken random shaped shards of delicious confectionery. However, the homestyle 'lumpy bumpy' pieces of fudge and honeycomb creates a problem – how do we ensure we consistently achieve the correct legal weight for each retail pack without incurring wastage.
This is where we need your support: By raising money to buy some magic weighing scales (well to me its wizardry – automatically adding and dividing and such like!) The scales will calculate average weights for us, which will in turn reduce wastage and thereby improving the price we need to charge. The scales and all the clever IT can look after itself and we can concentrate on making our delicious range of Fairtrade, gluten-free treats for you.
The campaign finance will not just be for the weighing scales and IT for the final packing process, but we will also invest in more accurate scales and data capture systems that will improve our wastage and management information systems throughout the factory.
The investment will have a long lasting legacy benefit for the factory: not only will we launch a premium product without the premium price tag but we will grow our factory giving further employment opportunities for more people. Our little village depends on us! Any support you are able to give would be most appreciated.
Hello! Thank you so much for visiting our campaign page. I’m Jenny, the co-founder of Radfords Fine Fudge Ltd. We started the business 10 years ago nearly to the day (15th December 2006.) We are currently situated in a small picturesque village in Somerset called Stoke-sub-Hamdon, where we have created an amazing range of fudge and confectioneries.
My husband, Colin, and I have steadily grown the factory and there have been some truly amazing moments along the way. Our factory has been awarded SALSA accreditation which means it meets a very high level of technical and quality standards.
In 2014 we were winners at the Western Gazette Business Excellence Awards and during the same year we were finalists at The Somerset Business Awards. A different frock for each occasion! We have had the cabinet minister for Food and Rural Affairs at the factory the day before the last general election, and we have met with royalty and Lords – Princess Anne is a fan of our fudge and we have presented a hamper of fudge to the Countess of Wessex.
As well as being lumpy, bumpy and home-style in appearance, our the new range will be licenced by the Fairtrade Foundation to sell products bearing the Fairtrade mark.
What this means is that where one of our ingredients is available for us to buy it ‘Fairtrade’ then we must buy this as opposed to a non-Fairtrade option. Our Fairtrade ingredients are more expensive than non-Fairtrade, but this means that the farmer or producer receives a proper, fair, level of remuneration for their produce.
Currently we source ingredients including sugar, golden syrup, vanilla and rum under the processes and Standards laid down by the Fairtrade Foundation for them to be deemed Fairtrade ingredients. Not all of our ingredients are available from Fairtrade sources, for example our dairy produce such as butter and clotted cream is sourced locally in the South West.
All of our Fairtrade ingredients are identified on our pack labels along with a statement of the overall percentage by weight of the finished product which these ingredients make up; typically over 60%. Our recipes and supply chains are vetted by the Fairtrade Foundation and we are subject to their annual inspection and auditing process to ensure the provenance of everything we produce.
Whilst Fairtrade ingredients are more expensive than non-Fairtrade, it is good to know that producers are being properly rewarded for their hard work! Fairtrade fudge is definitely the way to go!Next Step
At the moment we are packing to ‘minimum weight’ which means that every pack is at least the amount declared on the label. This is fine when we are packing regular shapes but we rather like the irregularity and home-style appearance that comes from a hand-broken process. So we want to produce our new Fairtrade range using a hand broken process. However, the irregular shaped pieces cause us a headache in the packing process and we will need to improve our weighing controls so that we can pack by ‘average weight’. To comply with The Weights & Measures Act (a huge 300-page boring legal document) would be a very time consuming process, needing to manually record every pack and then reach for the calculator to check compliance. However, with investment in the right scales we can have the whole process automated and this will enable us to keep our weights under control.
We will be using Fairtrade sugar and syrup in the production of our new range which, as you might expect, is more expensive than non-Fairtrade ingredients. The extra price we pay for our ingredients goes towards a fairer deal for farmers and workers in developing countries but the investment from this campaign will also improve our factory efficiencies to ensure that our customers shouldn’t have to pay a premium for Fairtrade.
You may wonder why we’re not going to a bank. It is still difficult to secure funding through traditional sources such as business bank loans in the current economic climate. Despite this project having a clear and demonstrable payback we still cannot finance the project without burdening the business with high loan interest. And so when we were presented with this fantastic opportunity to run a campaign on the Tesco BackIt platform, I fully embraced it. The project is all about sharing a better future for lots of different stakeholders and those who donate funds will be rewarded in the knowledge that your support is hugely valued and appreciated. It will benefit many people’s lives including the world’s community of Fairtrade farmers, growers and workers along with the current and future employees of Radfords Fine Fudge.
The funds raised will go towards the weighing scales, the software and the IT infrastructure that links it all together. If we go into overfunding, there are so many things that we can do with the additional funds raised - such as adapting the site to facilitate factory tours for the public (which is the next dream!). But first we’d love to kick off our Fairtrade range dream by achieving our fundraising target to help us purchase the weighing scales.
Help us to succeed by sharing this campaign with your friends and loved ones, as every little bit really does help!
We’re offering some incredible rewards for every single pledge. Please click on the Rewards section for more information. As many entrepreneurs will tell you - it’s all about the journey. I’d love you to be part of it. Please click the link to Pledge and claim some of our delicious confectionery as your reward or even a hamper or even a factory tour!
Now with some limited edition rewards including:
We would be more than happy to talk with you about the campaign and the huge benefits so feel free to drop me a line so that we can arrange a call.
You can also support us by sharing the news of our campaign on social media and with your networks. Please spread the word about us and tell your friends and close ones we need their support to succeed too. We really appreciate it and we hope you enjoy our delicious products as a reward.
Thank you so much for reading, Jenny Tyler
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