An Idea Is Born
Goupie originally came from grandma Noble (Shirley), Janet's mother. It was a treat that was enjoyed in the Noble household for as long as anyone can remember. This has caused great difficulties in remembering exactly where it came from and why on earth it was named Goupie! So let's solve that pronunciation issue here and now. 'Goo-pee' has become the officially accepted pronunciation, despite the fact that is was always called 'goo-pay' in the Simpson household!
Shirley's original recipe can still be found in her hand-written cookbook, though it's carefully locked away at Goupie HQ - very hush hush! This is the recipe that saw the Noble/Simpson family through 50 years of in-home Goupie making. It was enjoyed at many a family event, car drive and even in extra-special packed lunches!
Now it's time to single in on Janet and Joe, the pair who started sharing our family treat with the rest of the world.
They met over 30 years ago, when Joe interviewed Janet for a job. Needless to say, she got it. After working together for a number of years (including a few of their own enterprises), moving in with each other, getting married and having two daughters, they found themselves looking for the next challenge: their legacy.
It was Grace and Hannah's idea for their parents to start selling Goupie and, after many dinner table discussions, Janet decided to whip up a batch and test it on the local market.
We'd like to say that at this point we already knew we wanted to create a vegan friendly, gluten-free product and had mapped out a full business plan on how to change the world. We'd like to, but we can't.
If we're honest, all we knew at this point was that we liked Goupie, and that there was nothing else like it on the market. We hadn't spent years in product development, consulted marketing teams or drummed up seed capital. We just had a product we all liked and best intentions.
Remarkably, when Janet and Joe visited our local cafes, orders were placed on the spot (despite our lack of plan!).
This put the pair in quite the predicament. They hadn't yet formed any sort of official business plan, designed any packaging, or even worked out just how they were going to produce the product in larger quantities. Fortunately, they're a resourceful duo, and quickly whipped up a complete looking package to send out to these first few customers. This included the tagline still used on packaging today (for those of you who somehow haven't memorised it, it goes something like this: a devilishly moreish chewy chocolate confection with a hint of crunch). Not bad for quick thinking, eh?
Where Are We Now?
From those humble beginnings, Goupie has now grown into a (somewhat) functioning business, with a number of employees, a clear vision, bespoke (SALSA certified) factory unit, its very own Chocolate House in Tunbridge Wells, and a huge variety of customers.
The business is now run by mother-daughter duo, Janet and Grace, with remarkably few arguments impeding the way to further success!
We're clear that we want to do business in the way that we believe all businesses should be run, without compromise. This doesn't just cover one singular problem, but a raft of issues that almost all business encounter on a daily basis; from treatment of staff, to sourcing of ingredients, to the sustainability of it's packaging (both that which the customer sees, and that which it doesn't). It's important to us that our products taste great, without costing the Earth (physically, or metaphorically).
If you want to hear more about this, please have a look at 'Our Ethical Stance' page, where we cover it all!
You can also find out more about the beginnings of our business in the Goupie blog, under the tab 'The Goupie Story'.
We hope that this has given you a better understanding of who we are. If you want to hear more, feel free to contact us on social media or via email!