Adam and George founded The Fresh Olive Company in 1991, but the heritage goes back a good few years before that…
Adam and George get allocated to share a desk on the first day of big school, they’ve been best mates ever since.
Adam goes off to Cambridge University whilst George goes to cookery school in Paris, then works in Michelin starred restaurants La Taillevent in Paris before returning to London to work in the Capital Hotel.
George is cheffing on a private yacht. It's owned by another George, someone you might have heard of: George Harrison.
(He mostly rented it out though, Belazu George met Beatle George just once.)
Adam and George take a holiday in Provence, to visit George’s mum, Ailsa. She takes them to the market, where Monsieur Soler sells olives of a quality British people can only dream about. They take ten buckets back to England. The first customer is Fasta Pasta in Oxford, who snap up the lot.
Fresh Olive takes off: Armed with a Yellow Pages, a little van and the only top notch olive mixes in the UK, there’s no shortage of delis and chefs eager to buy, including Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons.
Keen to expand the range, George and his mum tour Europe looking for exciting new ingredients. On their travels they find outstanding olive oil, balsamic vinegar and pesto, and make lifelong friends in Eduard, Allesandro and Mario.
We take a stall at the world famous Borough Market near London Bridge, where we trade happily until 2016, when Borough won't renew our lease, taking umbrage at us having a few products in premium supermarkets.
We launch oils and vinegars in Sainsbury's and Waitrose under the name Belazu.
A trend for British chefs setting up abroad works in our favour; our first export customer is the Jumeirah Beach hotel in Dubai...the first of many (we're now available in 30 countries).
The Belazu Foundation sponsors a school in Morocco.
Soon we're sponsoring three schools, and we support them to this day (and other projects closer to home too).
By 2005, we're selling 30 million servings of pesto a year.
In 2006, we begin supplying more and more food manufacturers, including companies who make food for Marks and Spencers. As a result, we gain BRC A status, which we proudly hold to this day (we're A+ these days, where the inspectors can drop by unannounced).
We move to specialist premises in Greenford, enabling us to make more of our products in house to the highest possible quality.
Enter Great Taste Awards for the first time. Four years later we've got 50 stars in our trophy cabinet.
The year of Zero landfill.
Our Ready steady green recycling initiative achieves zero landfill status in just one month, for which we win several awards.
Now we offer over 300 product lines, being called "Fresh Olive" doesn't do our range justice any more. We roll both our brand names together into one, The Belazu Ingredient Company.
25 not out!
We celebrate 25 years' success by winning 'Best Stand' at Taste of London and launching a new range of premium bar snacks.