From school fairs to a nationwide cult following – Eddy’s has been on quite the journey. The team spoke to Joan Fourie about the freshest of French Dressings.
What is your company background, how did you start the business?
“The idea for the company came from Edwina 'Eddy' Laurence, who is passionate about all aspects of food – the gathering, the cooking, the eating, and the sharing. When her children were younger, Eddy created a delicious French Dressing as a fundraiser product for her children’s school fairs. The French Dressing proved to be extremely popular and would sell out within the first hour. Using the school directory, customers would track her down and request more. She always agreed to this – requesting that the empty glass bottles were returned to her front doorstep so she could re-use them.”
“Since then she has had continued to make the French Dressing as a hobby (producing about 1000 bottles a year). In the school holidays her children were employed as professional bottle shakers to help with the production. After many years of conversations around the family dinner table of 'taking it to the next level', in 2015 Eddy’s four children, David, Sarah, Joan and Kirsty, did just that.”
What are the current product range and variants and how do these products stand out in the market?
“Currently Eddy’s has two products, the original French Dressing and Whole Grain Honey Mustard. Both products are made by hand in small batches in a commercial kitchen. It was imperative to Eddy that we stayed true to the original products when increasing production on a commercial level. In that sense they are very much artisan products. Eddy recognises the importance of utilising quality ingredients and no preservatives or binding agents are used in the products. For the French Dressing, this means that it must be shaken vigorously prior to use by those who are devouring it. We believe that this maintains the integrity of the flavour of Eddy’s products.”
“The Wholegrain Honey Mustard has a unique and tasty flavour that makes it a fantastic accompaniment to meats and in sandwiches. Each jar has a sprig of fresh rosemary which adds an exciting note of freshness. Both products are gluten free.”
Has there been any recent company news?
“We super excited to launch our new and improved labels and refreshed brand. We think they really capture the Eddy's vibe while presenting a more polished look. A big change from the original labels that Eddy's kids used to write by hand!”
What are the plans for the business moving forward, is there any expansion on the horizon?
“Our experience has been that most people who try Eddy’s French Dressing and Mustard, love the taste. We are excited that Eddy’s has gained a large ‘cult following’ in parts of New Zealand outside the original Auckland market through word of mouth. We would therefore like to approach more gourmet retail outlets around New Zealand. We will be providing new stockists with product samples to enable them to do tastings for customers. This year we will once again be bringing back our very popular summer gift boxes which people loved because they made a wonderful (and easy) Christmas gift. Longer term, we are exploring the idea of adding further products to the Eddy’s stable as well as working to supply supermarkets.”
Where are your products currently available to buy, and are you looking at or wanting to expand your availability?
“The products are available in gourmet retail outlets and online at our website www.eddys.co.nz. We are currently supplying some catering businesses with Eddy’s French Dressing for use in their salads and sandwiches. We are happy to discuss options for the supply of higher volumes for catering purposes to anyone interested. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.”