When people have tasted our products, the universal response has been "Wow, it tastes just like my grandma used to make". To preserve her food for winter in the days before electricity and fridges, grandma would have used her cellar (pantry or larder) - built under the house for this purpose, where a steady cool temperature and humidity could be maintained throughout the year. When visiting grandma, she would retrieve food to serve at her table from the cellar, hence why our brand is Pivniţa Bunicii - Grandma's Cellar or Pantry.
We are based in the town of Saschiz, in south-eastern Transylvania, one of four UNESCO World Heritage sites in the Târnava Mare area and one of the Europe’s most important natural and cultural landscapes, including some of the finest pristine wildflower-rich grasslands. The landscape is the result of centuries of good husbandry by local farming communities. It creates a unique sense of place and is a beautiful mosaic of ancient oak, hornbeam and beech forests, wildflower-rich meadows and pastures that support an astonishingly rich wildlife of plants, birds, mammals and insects.
Traditional farming is still carried out in ecological balance with nature with many of the local population completely self-sufficient producing fruits, vegetables, meat and dairy products that have real flavour – the way food used to taste in Western Europe before the intensification of agriculture in the fifties and the year-round supply created by the supermarkets. We started with a few quality jams nicely packaged and presented for sale to tourists but whilst quality and tradition remain key, our products also reflect innovation in the use of the wonderful, locally available ingredients.
To create a business that is commercially viable, ethical and sustainable, making delicious, natural and wholesome food.
To develop a profitable business that provides support for rural communities, by purchasing their produce or wild harvested flowers, fruits and berries, processing these into high quality products that taste superb, like Grandma used to make, and to delight customers who come back for more.
- Integrity: To follow and promote good business practice, transparency and accountability;
- Honesty: To tell the truth at all times;
- Ethics: To purchase local produce at a fair price and be exemplary employers;
- Respect: To care about local people, the traditions and the culture;
- Quality: To cook as grandma would cook for her family;
- Safety: To consistently follow protocols and international standards in food safety;
- Customer Service: To be prompt, efficient and courteous;
- Environment: To reduce our impact on the environment and promote sustainable wild harvesting.
We call our approach impact investment
We have used this investment to establish a social enterprise in Saschiz, where with eleven permanent staff, we are the largest private sector employer in town, with additional seasonal workers on contract at our busiest times of the year.