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Pivnita Bunicii

Pivnita Bunicii - ElderflowerTransylvania Food Company Srl (TFC) was registered in Romania in 2010 and is located in modern premises in Saschiz (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), where traditional skills and artisan innovation are combined with quality control measures and modern production techniques that ensure a consistent product which fully meets the required standards of food safety and healthy eating.

Careful design has ensured that our production facility blends with the architectural landscape on the outside while the use of modern materials provides thermal efficiency and a flexible food processing facility inside.

A key component of our business is the production of raw acacia blossom and elderflower juices, ingredients which are delivered in bulk for further processing in the UK by a food and soft drinks manufacturer. It is this aspect of our business that generates the greatest impact for the community.

Economic Impact
  • Creation of local employment - five permanent staff plus four seasonal hires;
  • Direct beneficiaries - over 1,300 of the poorest local people (approximately 50% women and children) collect wild flowers and they are paid each day in cash per kg - for some their only source of income in the year. A few families also earn by collecting wild fruits for our jams and other cordials;
  • Indirect beneficiaries - other members of collectors family;
  • Sub-contractors and suppliers - transport and product packaging etc.;
  • Community - increase in money circulating in local shops;
  • Other - increase in trade for local hotels and restaurants - our activities and shop are bringing more visitors to the town.

Social & Ethical Impact
  • Creating employment opportunities in local community;
  • Provision of training and paying fair wages;
  • Leading by example in compliance with labour laws, health and safety, food legislation, fiscal and business environment etc. leading to greater long term enterprise sustainability and increased impact on poverty reduction;
  • Profit sharing scheme for staff and understanding that long term employment depends on success;
  • Equity participation for management providing sense of ownership;
  • Empowerment of community leaders through the creation of collection points for wild harvested produce;
  • Treating the poorest and marginalised members of the community fairly and with respect.

Environmental Impact
  • Sustainable wild harvesting promoted - based on annual environmental impact assessments;
  • Local population are paid a fair price for collecting, providing a link to the value of conservation of their landscape and biodiversity;
  • By-products from processing used for on-farm compost, returning nutrients to the soil and conserving soil moisture.
We are also small scale artisan producers of cordials and fine preserves. Local fruits and berries from the meadows and forests are combined with traditional recipes, small batches and slow cooking to ensure that our products are full of flavour - just like the tasty ones your grandmother used to make, hence our brand which is Pivnita Bunicii - Grandma's Cellar or Larder. Collecting the wild fruits and berries provides further income generating opportunities for several local families.

We are innovative and use abundant local ingredients to create new products. After all, a traditional product is a successful innovation by previous generations.

Dracula's Delight We also bottle several types of honey which is collected from the wildflower-rich grasslands and is truly symbolic of the rich biodiversity of this remarkable area. We buy our honey from a single source, father and son bee-keepers, and it is bottled at our premises in Saschiz.

Our brand Dracula's Delight is based on a silhouette of the ruined medieval fortress and church tower  in Saschiz with vampire bats added to complete the  popular image of Transylvania.

Bram Stoker wrote much of  his novel Dracula in Whitby, North Yorkshire, where he was inspired  by the ruined abbey and is reputed to have based his fictional character on Vlad the  Impaler who was born in Sighisoara, just 20 km from Saschiz.

A major spice trading house in Sighisoara established in the early nineteenth century continued until the 1950's, but the  years  of communism all but  eliminated the  use  of  culinary spices in traditional cuisine. Pre 1945 the  Saxons produced spicy preserves and this is clearly remembered by older generations.

Our savoury preserves bring together these traditional Saxon recipes, our  knowledge of spices from around the world together with some artisan innovation in the  use  of  local ingredients, to produce combinations that initially were dismissed locally as too extreme (who would  combine plums with garlic and chilli!!!) but are now much enjoyed throughout Romania and beyond.
 
Pivnita BuniciiOur logo is an artistic impression of Salvia nutans, which is considered to be the most symbolic plant of the Tarnava Mare area.
 
We have created a Taste Transylvania experience and Shop next to our process facility in Saschiz, providing an opportunity for visitors to the area to enjoy the intense flavours of our artisan products and of course purchase some to take home. We also stock a selection of local crafts.

Our brand Taste Transylvania is also used to maximise the impact of our location and is specifically for promoting events outside Romania.