I had the chance to talk to Mr Brendan Roantree, Managing Director of Zed Candy, during ISM.
This Irish company was established in 1998 and has been growing and expanding since then. Now employes more than 270 people and has production facilities in China and in UK. Even if they produce hard and soft candy, chocolate and jelly beans, what is interesting to us is their production of bubble gum. They are real specialists in hollow ball production. Their designs and powerful image has always surprised me, since I met this company many years ago. I invite you to visit their web-site: www.zedcandy.com
They have one big brand:; JAWBREAKERS which includes hollow balls in different designs and sizes (Mammooth Jawbreaker, Monster jawbreaker, etc). The hollow balls have funny designs, like the ones that resemble an eye (Terror eyes) or a golf ball. There are other brands of bubble gum, such as GUM POWDER (in this case consists on coated nuggets of gum) or ZAPPERS (small gum squares). All the products from Zed Candy move away from the traditional, conventional, well-known styles and are able to present an innovative and striking look.
During ISM’13 Zed Candy presented a world first, which is a ball with 4 colour print (the logo of the company) on it. Also very powerful is the lollipop consisting on a liquid center, with bubble gum around it and then coated with 3 different layers (colours) of candy. This sophisticated product is called TORNADO POPS.
According to Brendan during last years he feels that the market is asking for higher quality products and that low price/low quality is not selling as much as before. Children are more and more novelty driven. About the future, he is worried about volatile raw material prices, currencies and legislations. As in international business manager he has to deal with those variables and it is a tough challenge. He also feels (and I fully agree with him, but I will discuss about this in another post) that ISM is getting smaller.
Thank you, Brendan, for your time and explanations!