Czech entrepreneur retakes control of business for fear of ‘bashing out … products en masse’
Blanka Milfaitová’s delicious marmalades have received a number of international awards and are successfully sold abroad, but she recently decided to limit her production in order to regain full control, the daily Mladá fronta Dnes (MfD) writes today.
Blanka, born in 1977, launched her “marmalade business” in Pohoří village in the Šumava mountains, south Bohemia, at the Czech-Austrian border in 2012. She moved there in 2010 and opened a café in the town of Srní, MfD writes.
At first, she offered her homemade marmalades at local markets, in small regional food stores and online.
Last year, she won two gold medals in “The World’s Original Marmalade Awards” international contest in London, and this year she won four golds.
This great success has changed her life completely, MfD writes.
All of a sudden, both small and big shops, including international chain stores, all over the world demanded hundreds of jars of her marmalades. She was making them 20 hours a day, hired new employees and opened new shops in European cities, such as London, Rome and Zurich, MfD adds.
However, last autumn, she, her partner and their little daughter set out for a one-year trip around the world. They travel in a mobile home and stop at various interesting places where she prepares marmalades made from the local ingredients, MfD says.
She plans to visit 35 countries and make more than 100 stops in 365 days. Their “marmalade tour” started in northern Africa, and it should end somewhere beyond the Arctic Circle.
In the meantime, Blanka’s manufactory in Pohoří is being reconstructed, but the other one in Srní keeps running.
On her trip, she made up her mind to withdraw from all business contracts and close her shops abroad. She was running four shops in foreign countries, three new ones were to be opened soon, and contracts for a few others were to be signed, she told the paper.
“I started to fear the idea of bashing out my products en masse. … The idea of a profit at any cost. I was losing my path for a while, but now I am back again,” she told MfD.
She says she likes to meet her clients, sell her products to them personally and see how they enjoy them.
Asked about her future plans, Blanka says she will add a new shop with delicacies to her café in Srní. However, her dream is to open a fantastic mountain hotel with excellent cuisine based on her homemade products, and she told MfD she has found inspiration in the Alps, the Dolomites and the Pyrenees.