It feels almost impossible for anyone to get their heads around how much has changed, and how quickly in the last few weeks (writing at the end of March 2020). Many of our neighbours and friends - fantastic bakeries, craft brewers, cafes and restaurants have all closed and face a very uncertain future.
It’s easy to feel totally devastated and overwhelmed by it all, but the only thing we can do at the moment is keep going and continue fulfilling your orders (whilst staying 2m apart at all times of course...).
Despite all the obvious negatives, it does however seem that the Coronavirus lockdown has had one big positive effect. From the huge amount of social media activity and the hundreds of Wall of Fame posts we’ve seen, many of you are obviously cooking more at home right now (some even dusting off old spiceboxes that have been in the cupboard for so long we’d forgotten we ever made them!).
It’s at least a reminder that one of the few things we can always salvage from a day, no matter how bad it might have been, is a great meal. None of us can travel or eat out right now, but that’s no reason to limit your culinary horizons. After all, the process of discovering, cooking and sharing exciting new recipes from around the world is one of life’s great pleasures and can have a hugely positive effect on our mood, maybe more necessary now than ever.
From the very start of the business in 2003, we’ve always tried to create products that bring a real sense of joy, colour and fun to mealtimes and that’s of course what we intend to keep doing in 2020. There are lots of exciting new products in the pipeline for this year so you’ll have plenty to look forward to and always have something new to try!
A few highlights from 2019:
The first virtual Spicery Festival of Flavour was a lot of fun, with games and prizes (including a bumper box of spice-related cosmetics!). Its legacy lives on in the Spicery FM playlist on on the Wall of Fame, and a behind the scenes video tour round Spicery HQ
Jobswap week included a staff interior decoration competition resulting in a spectacular new hallway, and the winning effort - possibly Britain’s most colourful toilets!
Curry Legend Roulette is live on the website, and every Curry Legend recipe is now available as a PDF download so you can build your own collection
Our big summer survey resulted in lots of useful website updates, plus we created the new Spicery Larder in response to requests to improve the ‘make this again’ section on our recipe cards
I spoke about our experiences at the regional Workfit conference to encourage other employers to give work opportunities to young people with Downs Syndrome
We were listed as one of only 165 Living Wage employers in Bristol (although we’d always paid well above minimum wage even before the Living Wage campaign started, and will continue to do so no matter what the economic fallout from the virus lockdown)
Taco Legend was launched on pre-sale and is already a bestseller (we’ve had to double our order with the printers to keep up with demand!)
There’s no doubt that recent events have made it an incredibly tough year for so many, and things will almost certainly get worse before they get better, but we’re still looking ahead with great optimism. We really hope you continue to enjoy what we’ve got planned for you in 2020 (and beyond)
James (Spicery founder and owner)
Read our previous annual reports!