“Our white honey is truly special,” in part because “our proprietary, smoke-free and bee-friendly honey collection and production methods preserve the pollen, vitamins, minerals and enzymes found in raw honey,” CEO Amit Hooda told FoodNavigator-USA.
He adds that harvesters are careful to cut away only a portion of the hive and to leave the queen and reminder hive intact so that it can regenerate within 15-20 days for additional harvests that leave plenty for people and bees.
Because the free-range bees pollinate “in the untouched forests of India” far from pesticides and other pollutants, their honey is 100% organic and Non-GMO Project Verified, “which is unattainable in most regions today,” Hooda said.
He also noted the honey is free from chemical antibiotics, unlike many competing products. He explains that the free-range bees have never been exposed to chemical antibiotics, which often are administered to beehive boxes on honey farms and can end up in the finished product.
Heavenly Organics makes the honey available in three varietals – White, Neem and Acacia – which Hooda said, “are all amazing and so different from one another from the taste to the nutritional attributes.”
A healthier sweet
The honey also is encased in a 100% dark chocolate shell to create Heavenly Organics’ Chocolate Honey Patties – a bite-sized treat that is offered as a healthier alternative to conventional candy and which recently won a NEXTY Award for Best New Sweet/Dessert.
“We use the cleanest ingredients on Earth starting with our 100% organic raw white honey and 100% unsweetened cocoa – both known for being powerful sources of minerals and immunity-boosting antioxidants,” Hooda said. He added the Chocolate Honey Patties are also Non-GMO Project Verified, gluten-, dairy- and soy-free and have no added sugar – relying on the honey for sufficient sweetness.
In addition, Hooda said, the confections “are innovative because they are remarkably simple and made with high-quality, organic and sustainably sourced and farmed ingredients. They have a crisp shell and creamy texture; they have a nicely balanced rich sweet flavor that really allows you to experience the taste and quality of the chocolate and the honey.”
The company recently extended its line of Chocolate Honey Patties to include Double-Dark Chocolate, which has only two ingredients, and Peanut, which has only four ingredients. The additions round out the current offering of Mint, Almond, Pomegranate and Ginger, Hooda said.
Creating peace with profits
The simplicity and taste of the Chocolate Honey Patties likely are not the only attributes that attracted the attention and accolades of the NEXTY award judges’ attention, Hooda acknowledged.
“The NEXTY judges place high importance on innovation, inspiration and integrity, which are the three pillars [on which] Heavenly Organics’ mission is based,” Hooda said.
He explained: “Heavenly Organics was founded as a way to help create peace and economic independence for indigenous people in remote and conflict areas of India. We work to provide ethical job opportunities and to preserve the traditional lifestyle of these small family-owned farms that work according to ancient, organic methods that preserve the rich fertile soil and ensure the maximum health-promoting qualities of the food they produce.”
He added that the company partners with worker-owned cooperatives that promise workers a fair wage and empower the communities to improve their way of life. He added he believes “profits can create peace” by building a long-lasting, sustainable economy that can help eliminate the need for conflict.
Currently, the company works with almost 600 families, and has a goal to expand to 5,000 family farmers by 2020. This will include worker-owned cooperatives in South America and other areas, Hooda said.
The expansion should help the company continue to provide sustainable sweets, including the future launch of 100% Organic Chocolate Honey Patties in Espresso and Coconut, as well as the launch of a new honey blend called Jammu Honey.
“Most importantly” though, Hooda says he hopes the expansion of the mission-based business will “inspire other entrepreneurs to do what we’re doing in another conflict area to increase peace and harmony for people across the globe.”