Miss Macaroon seals sweet deal with Selfridges
One of Birmingham’s leading social enterprises has sealed a new deal with a major high street retailer.
Miss Macaroon, which has made nearly three million macaroons for global brands, royalty and a host of celebrities, is now being sold in Selfridges’ Birmingham store after buyers saw posts on the company’s Instagram account.
Led by founder Rosie Ginday, the firm is now selling gift boxes of ten and 20 macaroons that come in a range of flavours, including 53% dark chocolate, fresh raspberry, pistachio, fresh lemon, strawberry, rhubarb and custard, mango and cinnamon, passionfruit, salted caramel and tonka bean.
The introduction – part of the retailer’s Project Earth sustainability project – is already surpassing expectations, with shoppers keen to enjoy the products that also help to give local people access to vital training and employment through its Macaroons that make a Difference (MacsMAD) programme.
“We’ve had a really strong start to sales in Selfridges and we’re hoping to build on this with monthly sampling in-store,” said Ginday, who celebrated Miss Macaroon’s 10th birthday last year.
“It’s great to have such a massive brand selling our macaroons and this builds on an existing relationship with Midcounties Co-op to stock them in their premium deli stores across the Cotswolds and Midlands.”
She added: “This mainstream retail exposure helps us grow our brand and, importantly, tell our unique story to a much bigger audience, leveraging much-needed funding in the process.”
Miss Macaroon has grown from a desire to use macaroons to help people back into work into one of Birmingham’s leading employability programmes and a destination food venue for visitors to the Great Western Arcade and Resorts World.
The MacsMAD initiative has been running for over ten years and provides people who are low in confidence, suffering mental health issues or have been unemployed for some time with access to a unique ten-week course that covers time in the social enterprise’s training and production kitchen where they work alongside professional chefs.
At the heart of the approach is giving them skills in both catering, retail and marketing, whilst also supporting their own personal development through mentoring and, in recent years, access to a psychotherapist and counsellor.
More than 130 graduates have so far completed the Macaroons that make a Difference programme, with 27 currently employed at the Birmingham business, including 95% of the kitchen staff, 100% in business admin and 50% in retail.
Last year’s profits have been reinvested into funding Dyslexia, ADHD and Autism diagnosis for MacsMAD graduates who needed it and couldn’t wait the two or more years it takes to receive one off the NHS.
Ginday added: “We’re expecting to train another 80 young people over the next twelve months, but that’s just the start. There is also the possibility of creating a joint venture to deliver MacsMAD in conjunction with a partner organisation and to grow the co-delivery model so we can support even more people who need it.”