As relatively new business owners, we weren’t naïve to the fact that climate can effect the pricing and availability of the ingredients we use. We constantly kept one eye on some of the key places we purchase our goods from and constantly checked shifts in pricing against our costing structure.
So why are we blogging about this? Well, some of you may have heard of the ongoing California drought. California happens to also be one of the principle suppliers of Almonds to North America and water plays a big part in the amount of yield coming from almond crops. Over the past couple of seasons, Almond yields have dropped significantly – causing a drastic increase in almond prices.
As some of you are now putting together, almonds happen to be the main ingredient with almost every cookie/dessert we make at The Moroccan Bakery.
Typically in these situations, there are two routes an entrepreneur can take. The first one involves watering down the ingredients by introducing fillers or mixing in less-expensive nuts to the recipe to bring the costs down. The second option is where you stay true and authentic to your recipes and increase the price.
We’ve decided to take the second option, because as a premium dessert brand, compromising on ingredients/taste is not an option. We know that you all expect nothing but the best from us – and we are committed to deliver.
Over the past year, almond pricing has more than doubled. It’s actually been shocking to us how fast and drastic the prices have increased. Over the past two years, we’ve tried our best to mitigate any price increases, but unfortunately we finally had to implement some price increases in order to remain profitable.
We honestly tried our best to try to avoid this situation, but there are only so many efficient business processes one can use to reduce costs. This has been a challenge for us as this is our first foray into a price increase; we’ll be looking for your guidance and feedback to let us know how we are doing.
Feel free to let us know your thoughts below.
That’s right family; you’ve probably noticed that we look a little different. A bit more sophisticated….
We’ve been spending the last few months reviewing our branding.
Our first iteration is our logo (yes, more to come). We’ve completely redesigned it to reflect a more mature, cultured, and nuanced brand – that is indicative to the unique and delicious desserts we serve to you everyday.
We started by ensuring that homage was paid to Morocco in many of its classic visual representations. So we started by ensuring that mosaic design work was incorporated into the design. Morocco is very famous for its intricate geometric mosaic designs (most notably their tile work) and we wanted to ensure it was included in a way that was easy on the eyes and logistically easy to print.
In addition, we added the famous ‘Fes cap’ within the logo. This hat can be seen on men across Morocco and is traditionally worn during events of importance. We felt this tradition was fitting for our logo. We actually struggled with this part of the redesign and we went through many different types of imagery (tagine pot, hand of Fatima (khamsa), etc..), but felt that the history and tradition of the Fes cap was best suited.
You’ll also notice that we updated the font work of the logo. We focused on increasing the elegance of the fonts to better represent the exquisite creations we make here at The Moroccan Bakery. Now if you’ve ever designed anything before, you know how painstaking the process is to choose a font. This part took a long time and we wanted to give many thanks to our principle designer who was able to scour the world to find the right one(s).
So there you have it.. Our new logo. Although we (as many of you) loved our original one, we felt it was time to mature the branding – in tandem with our business as it continues to grow.
We’d love to hear your thoughts. Feel free to comment below to let us know what you think…
We have a fantastic COOKIE SALE on now. Get up to 40% off select cookies!!!! Discounts have already been applied on the site and the ones selected are fan favourites!
As you can see, these are some of our best selling items up for sale. The quantities are limited, so order while they are still available.
NOW GO GO GO!!!
That’s a very good question…
Since we arrived back from our research trip to Morocco, we’ve been busy doing a multitude of things – which all seem to be happening at the same time.
Firstly, we are redesigning some “stuff” for some future initiatives that are being planned. We won’t speak too much about this initiative, but we’ll certainly let you know the secret when the time to reveal comes… Stay tuned for that.
In addition, we’ve partnered up with an institution to help us get our products retail ready as we hope to have our goodies up on store shelves in the near future. We know this has been something many of you have been asking for and we are certainly working towards achieving that goal. Many things have to fall in place at (more or less) the same time, but we have been spending an exhaustive effort to that end.
On top of all that, we have also been busy at the lab experimenting on new products and cookie designs we picked up from our recent trip to Morocco. Those of you who follow our twitter, Instagram, or Facebook pages have seen some of the ‘beta’ versions already. We hope to have a bunch of new stuff for you very soon. One thing for certain, they all taste amazing!!
We know we’ve been a bit absent from our postings as of late. All of it was due to a passionate effort to make the Moroccan cookies/sweets that you love, even better!
Some exciting things are coming down the pipes… We can’t wait to share it with all of you.
Keep checking our blog for more updates and don’t forget to follow us on social media below:
We've just returned back from our short trip to Marrakech. We visited this beautiful city to get inspired by some of the cookie creations of the south, talk shop with the pastry chefs, and do a little shopping as well ;)
But before we get into that, let me first take moment to acknowledge the city. Marrakech is a historically old, cosmopolitan, clean, and well kept city that is extremely HOT!!! Now we can take heat like the best of them, but this place is ridiculous in the summer. Everyday was 40+C and that wasn't including any humidity. Our days consisted of morning shopping/research, then back to the hotel for shelter and a swim, then back outside closer to the evening (when the temperature begins to drop again).
We got to Marrakech by taking the night train. We bought tickets with beds (couchettes) and I'd recommend this approach to anyone. From Tangiers to Marrakech by train is about 10 hours, which passes nicely when you are asleep. We left at 10pm and arrived there all rested at 8am the next morning. The cost of the ticket was about $45 CAD - which isn't too shabby at all. Now don't expect glamorous surroundings, you are essentially sleeping on a bunk bed - but it's air conditioned and you're served some of the best train coffee we've ever had. ;)
But enough about that, what did we find? At the beginning, we found a lot of what we found up north in tangiers (in regards to cookie styles and selection). We were a bit disappointed because we remember coming across 2 places a few years ago that had a great selection. We spent 2 days navigating the labyrinth that is their main souk (which is actually a bunch of different souks blended together), to no avail....
...Until the last day, right before we were going to leave.
We finally found the 2 shops and spent some time with them talking about their cooking and preparation methods. We certainly took a lot from them and can't wait to start experimenting in the lab when we get back home. We bought a bunch to snack on and to take home with us as well.
The trip was exhausting due to all the walking, bargaining, and dealing with the heat - but it was all worth it!!
Only a few days left before we head back home - which (we hope) will consist of mainly going to the beach :)
Here are some pictures of the 2 places and their amazing Moroccan cookies and sweets.
Chat again soon ;)
A big hello all the way down in Morocco!
We write this update whilst sipping on some delicious coffee, on a cafe patio, with the humming of a busy night life as our soundtrack. We finally made it! It's been a long flight (overnight to Madrid, 3 hrs layover, then a quick 1 hr to Tangiers).
Naturally, you arrive in the middle of the day and are expected to stay up and visit family almost immediately (if they are not already at your home waiting for you, lol). It takes about 2-3 days before you get into any sort of pattern resembling normalcy.
The good news is, none of this should delay our planning to study under some of the best pastry chefs in the region. How, you ask? Well, we're going to let you in on a little secret..... Half of The Moroccan Bakery team have been here for over a month already... Studying... During the highest demand time for Moroccan sweets - Ramadan!!!
That's right, we don't mess around over here. Lol. We wanted to make sure we had as much opportunity to hone our craft, collaborate on recipes, and bring even more delectable goodies than you could ever imagine.
Thus far, we've develop a couple of new cookies and really worked with the team here on refining our recipes. Certainly more to come.
We also had the opportunity to go out on the town, and visit the beach (we allow some pleasure to our business) ;)
Some pictures after the jump... Feel free to comment away.
We just completed another great RAMADISCOUNT season and The Adorare Pack was a huge success - we blew through our entire inventory.
So what’s next?
Final deliveries go out on Sunday and then we begin to close off any outstanding items (business stuff) to prepare for our Moroccan research trip. We leave next week.
So what are our plans for Morocco?
Great question! :) Well, this isn’t exactly going to be a vacation for us. Our Pastry Chef extraordinaire has partnered with some legendary Pastry Chefs in Morocco to further hone our craft. We will be learning from them and bringing back some awesome new creations for you all to delight in.
In addition, we’ll be using the time to potentially bring back some amazing stuff to expand our product line. Nothing set in stone, but if we do – trust us, you won’t be able to find it anywhere else. ;)
Throughout our journey, we’ll be blogging, tweeting, facebook posting, and instragming our journey. This way, you can feel like you are apart of us on this journey.
Aaaaaaand…. If we have time, we may get some much needed R&R.. But no guarantees on that one ;)
Keep checking our blog for more updates and don’t forget to follow us on social media below: