Stamford, CT November 26, 2013 – Saffron Road, the packaged food brand of American Halal Co., was awarded Best Halal Food Company in the World at the prestigious Global Islamic Economy Summit (GIES) in Dubai, U.A.E. yesterday. The GIES is the equivalent of the Global Economic Forum of the Middle East and is facilitated by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Thomson Reuters as the world’s leading Islamic economy conference. The award was bestowed on American Halal’s CEO, Adnan Durrani, by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, where 2,500 registrants were in attendance at the Jumeirah Arena Ballroom in Dubai. The Award celebrates global emerging companies that have demonstrated significant social and business impact and have inspired a new generation of leaders. Saffron Road was selected from a competitive list of applicants from over 30 countries.
Adnan Durrani commented by saying, “We are so honored at American Halal to achieve the utmost level of global accolades by His Majesty Sheikh Maktoum and the Global Islamic Economy Summit. I am so proud of our team at Saffron Road for our dedication to Halal values that not only meet the needs of the wider Muslim community, but are also being applauded around the world for our steadfast purity and excellence. On the heels of Saffron Road winning Best Halal Product in the World at the World Halal Forum in 2011, in just a short period of time our impact on the global stage has been remarkable.”
The keynote speaker of the GIES Mark Mobius, Chairman of the famous Templeton Funds, espoused the huge economic power that Islamic economies and Muslim consumers have on the world economy.
The Islamic economies of the world represent more than $8 trillion in GDP, and a 1.6 billion population growing at double the rate of the global population. Disposable income for the Islamic economy is estimated at $4.8 billion—and with 62% of the population under the age of 30, the next generation of Muslims are increasingly asserting their Islamic sensitivities with respect to everything from food preferences to banking and finance, to fashion, cosmetics, travel and healthcare.
Mr. Durrani is also a speaker at the conference on a panel titled, “Halal to Wholesome—Transforming Values to Global Appeal.”
Decadent Dessert Line available Exclusively at Whole Foods Market®
Stamford, CT – November 7th, 2013 – Saffron Road™, the packaged food brand of American Halal Co., is delighted to announce the launch of their new line of Dessert Mini Tarts at Whole Foods Market (WFM) nationally this month. These bite-size delicacies are inspired by the irresistible flavors of India, South America and France. Saffron Road’s new Mini Tarts make entertaining guests quick and easy as they require no baking and practically no preparation – simply take the Tarts out of the freezer to defrost and then serve. Given their mini size, each guest can decide how much they’d like to eat and not feel guilty about eating too much or leaving a large amount of their dessert on the plate.
Saffron Road’s epicurean dessert line, which is in premium packaging adorned with gold embossed lettering, includes:
Kashmiri Lemon Ginger – Made with creamy Shrikand, a delicious hand-crafted yogurt cheese formed from strained Dahi, swirled with tangy lemons and fresh puréed ginger.
Chocolate Coconut Cheesecake with Fair Trade Chocolate – Made with wondrous Fair Trade chocolate and coconut shavings to create a cheesecake beyond compare.
Salted Caramel Cheesecake – Rich, creamy cheesecake featuring the delightful dance of sweet caramel with the counterpoint of natural French sea salt.
“We’re very excited to introduce these sophisticated delicacies inspired by the world’s best ingredients and traditions,” says Adnan Durrani, CEO of Saffron Road. “Featuring Shrikand, a strained Yogurt cheese from India, Fair Trade chocolate from South America, and French sea salt, we ventured from exotic tastes across three continents to bring Saffron Road’s customers these unique World Cuisine epicurean treats. These elegant Mini Tarts will bring cheer and adventure into American homes for the Holidays.”
“Saffron Road’s decadent new Mini Tarts are perfect for social gatherings and for holiday parties, especially since they are so easy to just thaw and serve. All of Saffron Road’s innovation, product development, consumer and community outreach, and stellar success is a direct result of our win-win partnership with the Whole Foods Market Global Team and we look forward to our further mutual success with this new line at Whole Foods Market,” commented Executive Vice President of Saffron Road, Jack Acree.
“From the day we first started carrying Saffron Road’s products, they’ve delivered fresh ideas and new flavors that our shoppers really love and can’t find anywhere else,” said Dwight Richmond, Global Grocery Purchasing Coordinator for Whole Foods Market. “These new Mini Tarts will be a great addition to any holiday table.”
Consumers can find the new Mini Tarts at Whole Foods Market stores’ frozen aisles for the suggested retail price of $8.99 each.
New Item Debuts Exclusively at Whole Foods Market®
Stamford, CT – November 5th, 2013 – Saffron Road, the packaged food brand of American Halal Co., is launching a premium all- natural, Halal Certified, gluten free Lamb Broth nationally at Whole Foods Market (WFM) stores this month. Saffron Road’s Classic Culinary Lamb Broth celebrates the chef’s tradition of using culinary ingredients and kettle cooking – in particular, by incorporating pasture raised 100% vegetarian-fed lamb with hearty vegetables and rich, flavorful herbs, providing three grams of protein per serving. Saffron Road currently has three other broths in distribution, but the new lamb broth would not exist without the support and guidance of Whole Foods Market. The first-of-its-kind lamb broth will join the three other Saffron Road broths: Artisan Roasted Chicken Broth, Traditional Low Sodium Chicken Broth, and Classic Culinary Vegetable Broth.
Whether used with vegetables, in making homemade stews, soups and sauces, or to liven up leftovers, these culinary inspired broths enable consumers to add rich flavor to their own recipes. In addition to being a delicious time-saver, studies by the Weston Price Foundation show that Saffron Road’s broths can promote good digestion, strengthen joints and increase respiratory health.
“Saffron Road just set another unprecedented milestone – we are the first Halal lamb broth to be sold in the high-end Tetra package, which we believe is healthier than the mainstream soup can containers or stock cubes,” says Adnan Durrani, CEO of Saffron Road. “With the guidance of the Global Grocery Team at Whole Foods Market, we took that innovation up a notch further in culinary excellence; all of our broths also use a very delicate brew of pure Halal antibiotic free gelatin and naturally vitamin-infused herbs and roasted vegetables, bringing an unmatched robust flavor and quality to our broths that home chefs can really celebrate. Our consumers have been eagerly requesting a Saffron Road Lamb Broth, so we are thrilled to be able to meet this need.”
“The popularity of our broths has been growing over time, as they have won awards and grown in consumer acceptance. Being able to partner with Whole Foods Market on such a unique and delicious item has been a great partnership – and just in time for the busy Holiday cooking season.” added Jack Acree, Executive Vice President of Saffron Road.
“Our shoppers look to Whole Foods Market to find top quality products that they simply can’t find anywhere else, so we’re thrilled to be the only retailer offering Saffron Road’s new Lamb Broth,” said Dwight Richmond, global grocery purchasing coordinator for Whole Foods Market. “Saffron Road has consistently delivered fresh ideas and new flavors for our shoppers to enjoy and we’re confident the new broths will be a bit hit, too.”
The new Lamb Broth is currently available exclusively at select Whole Foods Market stores at the suggested retail price of $4.99.
Stamford, CT – July 25th, 2013 – Saffron Road™, the flagship premium brand of American Halal Co., won enormous accolades at the 2013 Summer Fancy Food show in New York City, the largest trade show in North America for natural and specialty foods and beverages, with 180,000 specialty products from more than 2,400 food manufacturers. At the Fancy Food Show, which was held for the 59th year during the first week of July at the Jacob Javits Center, Saffron Road debuted its new line of authentic Simmer Sauces, which included: Harissa, Korean Stir-Fry, and Thai Red Curry.
A seasoned panel of judges for the Fancy Food Show, known as the show’s official “trendspotters”, cited a few select products (from over 180,000 products) as the leaders of the “Top Five Food Trends” for 2013-2014. Saffron Road’s new Non-GMO Project Verified Simmer Sauces were recognized as being the top new trend for “Global Meal Starters.”
“We couldn’t be more proud of our culinary team’s major win here for our new Asian Simmer Sauce line. The Fancy Food Show and NASFT’s selection of our Korean Stir-Fry and Thai Red Curry Simmer Sauce as the best Global Meal Starter is a huge validation of Saffron Road Team’s exceptional and truly authentic culinary excellence in creating, innovating, and inspiring the new Asian/Korean category. Not only did we set the bar much higher with a new gold standard for authentic Asian sauces, but I am most proud that we were able to certify these as Non-GMO Project Verified and make sure that all our Simmer Sauces are 100% made in the USA. Given July 4th marks Saffron Road Brand’s 3 year anniversary, we are a true-blue Americana brand,” stated Adnan Durrani, CEO of American Halal Co. “In 2014, we intend to innovate and further inspire the Asian/Korean segment, so our consumers can look forward to being further enlightened on their journey on the Saffron Road.”
Jack Acree commented by saying, “This is such an exciting category for us. We have seen in-store turns increase dramatically as a result of the Single Use Pouch combined with our Culinary Excellence. It was great to get additional validation from the press and attendees. ”
Enhanced Focus on One of Its Core Consumer Groups, American Muslims
Stamford, CT – July 8, 2013 – Though only in its third year, American Halal Company, Inc.’s brand, Saffron Road, has already established itself as an innovator in addressing the unmet needs of the American Muslim consumer market. In preparation for the month-long Islamic holiday, Ramadan, Saffron Road has significantly augmented its product lines and dramatically expanded its retail distribution nationally to better serve its Halal consumers. In less than three years, Saffron Road has gone from four initial Certified Halal products at inception, to nearly 40 Certified Halal products sold nationally today.
Saffron Road recently launched 3 new World Cuisine Simmer Sauces, ideal for quick meal preparation during Ramadan. These new Non-GMO Project Verified flavors are Korean Stir Fry, Thai Red Curry, and Harissa. The entire assortment of Saffron Road products will be on sale in over 6,000 stores during Ramadan including Whole Foods Market (during July), Kroger (during August), Publix (during July), Fairway, H.E.B and Central Market (during July), Harris Teeter (during July), Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage (during July), Cost Plus World Market (during July), and Sprouts (during July & August) and most independent stores where Saffron Road is carried (during July). The Saffron Road team hopes the increased retail availability paired with targeted promotions during Ramadan will incentivize Muslim shoppers to go in their local stores to purchase Saffron Road’s Halal products for festive gatherings during Ramadan, including iftars or the daily traditional breaking of the fasts at sundown.
“We believe Ramadan is an especially relevant time for brands and major retailers to connect emotionally with American Muslim consumers who so often have very few Halal food options at their disposal,” says Adnan Durrani, CEO of American Halal Company, Inc.” As I like to convey to our retail partners, the blessing of Ramadan for them is like 30 Thanksgivings in a row – quite a windfall for any major supermarket! American Muslims have over $170 billion in annual consumer buying power. Major marketing research firms like Ogilvy and Gallop have now confirmed that American Muslims have over 70% brand loyalty, and retailers and consumers brands can easily boost that to 95% during Ramadan by even the smallest gesture of compassion to this un-served and disenfranchised consumer segment by offering Halal relevancy during their holiest month. We’re thrilled to provide even more quality Halal products that fit into our consumers’ lifestyles, adhere to their dietary principles, and are available nationally at major supermarket stores around the country,” continues Durrani.
Saffron Road and its retail partners have already experienced first hand the benefits of marketing to Muslims. Last year during Ramadan, the brand increased its sales by 200% during the month of Ramadan alone. “Our proven success further demonstrates the validity of the Muslim market and continues to be a win-win, not only for our brand, but for our many retail partners as they are able to tap into a new and growing consumer base,” says Jack Acree, Executive Vice President of American Halal Company, Inc.
In addition to sale promotions with its retail partners during Ramadan, Saffron Road will be sharing a series of resources for Muslim consumers preparing for Ramadan, such as recipes and giveaways in collaboration with Halal food experts, Fauzia’s Kitchen Fun and MarocMama. Also collaborating with Saffron Road during Ramadan is global media commentator, The Muslim Guy, who is a regular weekly commentator on NPR’s show “Tell Me More” with Michel Martin, as well as a frequent guest on CNN. His Twitter account was named by The Huffington Post as one of the top 12 Muslim Twitter Accounts in the world. Saffron Road is excited about bringing on Mr. Iftikhar as its newest Brand Ambassador to even more deeply engage the American Muslim and non-Muslim followers during Ramadan.
Saffron Road will continue to incorporate a philanthropic aspect to its campaign supporting its charity partners, Whole Planet Foundation and The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). Stay tuned to the Saffron Road Facebook and Twitter pages during Ramadan to keep up-to-date on the brand’s activities and promotions.
All of Saffron Road’s products are Certified Halal by the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA).
Joins Nonprofit’s Ten Thousand Dollar Fund®
Stamford, CT – July 6, 2013 – Saffron Road™, the premium packaged food brand of American Halal Co., is pleased to announce that it has joined a select group of companies that have donated more than $10,000 to Whole Planet Foundation to help fund poverty alleviation around the globe. Whole Planet Foundation’s mission is to help end poverty worldwide by funding microlending programs in the U.S. and developing world communities that supply Whole Foods Market stores with product.
Saffron Road’s donations are a result of Saffron Road’s socially responsible business model which promotes a “triple bottom line”– in this case, giving back a percentage of sales to a worthy organization like Whole Planet Foundation. The company’s contribution will help fund the Foundation’s purpose to provide impoverished entrepreneurs in poor communities around the world microcredit. Microcredit is small loans – usually less than $300 – requiring no contract or collateral, that enable an entrepreneur with the opportunity to create or expand a home-based business and the chance to lift herself and her family out of poverty.
“From the inception of Saffron Road, we have remained die-hard supporters and long-term partners of Whole Planet Foundation,” said Adnan Durrani, CEO of American Halal / Saffron Road. “To date, we are proud to have improved the lives of hundreds of people in developing countries around the world. Surpassing donations of $10,000 to Whole Planet Foundation will have significant impact in uplifting very poor entrepreneurs and providing significant upward opportunities for individuals in impoverished communities. We are very excited to further deepen our partnership with both Whole Planet Foundation and Whole Foods Market. Our remarkable sales success at Whole Foods Market is directly linked to our mission of ethical consumerism and especially Whole Foods Market’s consumers who are voting with their dollars to support mission-based enterprises like Saffron Road. Whole Planet Foundation is core to our belief system in a healthier planet, a more sustainable food system, and our motivation of giving back to those less fortunate.”
In 2005, Whole Foods Market established Whole Planet Foundation as an expansion of its mission to be an active participant in the global community. The foundation was formed in partnership with Professor Muhammad Yunus and Grameen Bank, co-recipients of 2006 Nobel Peace Prize. Through trusted microfinance organizations worldwide, Whole Planet Foundation is reaching microentrepreneurs who can change their own lives through their own hard work and creativity.
“Through their generous support, Saffron Road has helped to provide more than 60 poor entrepreneurs – most of whom are women – with an opportunity to get ahead: to start her own business, create a steady stream of income and have the chance to lift herself and her family out of poverty,” said Philip Sansone, president and executive director of Whole Planet Foundation. “We’re grateful to work with partners who are committed to supporting microentrepreneurs around the globe.”
To donate to Whole Planet Foundation, learn more about the nonprofit, or for stories from microcredit loan recipients, visit: www.wholeplanetfoundation.org or read the Whole Story blog at: www.wholefoodsmarket.com/blog.
Brand Continues to Grow by Leaps & Bounds
Stamford, CT – July 4, 2013 – Saffron Road™, the premium packaged food brand of American Halal Co., celebrates its brand’s three year anniversary today, fortuitously on America’s Independence Day, making Saffron Road a true American brand. The success of the Saffron Road brand continues to evolve and grow as the brand’s team initially recognized unmet needs in the marketplace and has since carved out their own niche catering to discerning natural food and halal consumers who prefer premium foods that are held to the highest standards for wholesomeness and culinary excellence – All Natural, Antibiotic Free, Certified Humane®, Hormone Free, Non-GMO Verified, Gluten Free, Halal Certified.
“Given our premise of how deeply underserved our core consumer is, our professional instincts were spot on at Saffron Road in correctly gauging the synergistic needs of both premium halal and natural food consumers – our demographic sweet spot. This has enabled Saffron Road to carve out a beach head in the frozen grocery aisle – where we are the only entrée brand that can proudly claim that we are: halal certified 100% natural, Antibiotic-Free, Hormone Free, and Certified Humane®! Not only is that a tall barrier to entry, but also it has given Saffron Road a very unique brand value positioning from the get-go,” says Adnan Durrani, CEO of American Halal Co. “Our niche is not bound to just one category – ethnic, halal or all natural, but transcends several dietary needs, making way for a more premium choice for consumers with sophisticated and unique tastes.”
In just three years, the Saffron Road brand has:
- Established their first retail partnership with the world’s largest natural food retailer, Whole Foods Market®, and was the retailer’s debut into the U.S. halal market by being been rolled out nationally in all 11 of their regions
- Earned numerous exceptional certifications and delivered on these pure claims: Certified Gluten Free, Certified Humane®, Antibiotic Free, Certified Halal, Non-GMO Project Verified
- Increased its product line from four to now nearly 40 products, including both frozen and shelf-stable
- Secured over 6,000 grocery retail partners and are slated to be in up to 9,000 stores this year
- Engaged social networks, multiple iPhone apps, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram followers and emotionally connected big time with halal and natural foods consumers – who were all emboldened to become Saffron Road’s online brand advocates
- Gained several awards and recognitions not only for its marketing efforts which include a 2012 David Ogilvy Award in the Digital + Media category from the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF) for its campaign Halal History in the Making: Saffron Road and Whole Foods Market Partner Together to Meet Muslims’ Needs during Ramadan, but also has been recognized by top food industry experts like The Supermarket Guru, Phil Lempurt, as he declared the brand’s Chicken Tikka Masala entrée, Moroccan Tagine Simmer Sauce, and Falafel Crunchy Chickpea snacks – all ‘HITS.’
“These initial three years have been truly amazing – from identifying supportive retail partners who share our values and understand our market, to the outstanding consumer advocacy,” says Jack Acree, Executive Vice President of American Halal Co. “Our higher standard of ethical consumerism is resonating with both the grocery trade and consumers.”
Company’s new simmer sauces and other all-natural, non-GMO Project Verified products will be on display at booth #4655
Stamford, CT – June 11, 2013 (Booth #4655) – At this year’s Summer Fancy Food Show, Saffron Road, the packaged food brand of American Halal Co., is expanding its line of single-use Simmer Sauce pouches with the introduction of three new flavors: Harissa, Korean Stir Fry and Thai Red Curry. These new Simmer Sauces are all-natural and support the company’s ongoing commitment to providing Non-GMO Project Verified options for consumers.
Unlike glass jars, which are frequently over-heated and burn off flavors and natural elements, pouches are hot filled in less time, thus preserving the robust flavors Saffron Road’s epicurean consumers eagerly savor.
The new Simmer Sauces flavors – which take inspiration from the best in world cuisine – include:
- Harissa – Made from piri piri, a red pepper from the Sahara, and infused with flavorful spices and herbs.
- Korean Stir Fry – Crafted with hints of pear and a touch of toasted sesame oil, it features true Korean gochugaru peppers.
- Thai Red Curry –This authentic sauce is filled with a marketplace of ingredients – from galangal ginger to kaffir lime– to create a complex flavor.
In early 2011, Saffron Road recognized the potential of the pouch category, which has since emerged as a billion dollar innovation in the natural consumer channel and currently spans such segments as baby food, beverages, soups and skillet sauces. Furthermore, Saffron Road’s single-use Simmer Sauce pouches require 500 gallons less fuel to transport and produce 14 times less landfill material than the typical glass sauce bottle, resulting in a much smaller carbon footprint and more favorable environmental impact.
“Addressing market demand remains a top priority for our company, and we know that millennials, who now represent over 80 million American consumers, prefer easy-to-use and easy-to-store pouches as their ‘go-to’ package,” said Adnan Durrani, chief executive officer of American Halal Company, Inc.“ Given these emerging trends and Saffron Road’s mission of culinary excellence, we are very excited to be a leader in the category and to further champion our goal of bringing ethically and sustainably packaged food options to our consumers.”
To learn more about Saffron Road and to sample the products at the Summer Fancy Food Show, please visit Saffron Road at Booth #4655. On Saturday, June 29 at 8:00 a.m., Saffron Road’s Executive Vice President Jack Acree will also give a presentation titled “Learning the Lingo of Specialty Foods” on food industry acronyms and terms.
Brand Demonstrates Leadership in Transforming the Way the World Does Business through ‘Courageous Conversations’
Stamford, CT – April 25, 2013 – American Halal Company, Inc.’s Saffron Road brand is pleased to be among a select group of socially responsible companies to participate in the Social Venture Network’s (SVN) Spring Conference, April 25-28, themed ‘Courageous Conversations.’
SVN, the first network of entrepreneurs who pioneered socially responsible business, has been fostering a movement toward a more just and sustainable economy for more than 25 years, and has spawned many of the world’s most successful triple-bottom-line businesses.
Among other business leaders, Saffron Road’s CEO, Adnan Durrani, will be one the conference’s speakers – addressing the topic of “Big and Small Changemakers: Creating Smart and Effective Partnerships” on Saturday morning between 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Also on the panel with Mr. Durrani are Caryl Levine, owner of Lotus Foods, and Errol Schweizer, Executive Global Grocery Coordinator of Whole Foods Market.
“Saffron Road is proud to be a part of the SVN Conference again this year. Our company supports sustainable business practices from our operations on the farm, to the way we deliver our products to the retail shelf,” says Adnan Durrani, Chief Executive Officer.
Given the brand’s commitment to ethical consumerism, the Saffron Road team is constantly challenging the way they do business to ensure all aspects of the brand adheres to their values and enables sustainable growth for the company. They are also supporters of the SVN Bridge Project, an initiative that raises the profile and voices of diverse entrepreneurs including entrepreneurs of color, young business leaders and women entrepreneurs.
You can read more about this event and Mr. Durrani’s participation at: http://www.csrwire.com/blog/posts/786-courageous-conversations-an-interview-with-social-entrepreneur-adnan-durrani
Saffron Road Would Like to Congratulate Whole Foods Market for their Commitment to Full GMO Transparency by 2018
Stamford, CT — March 8, 2013 — Saffron Road would like to congratulate Whole Foods Market for their announcement today to have all products labeled to indicate if they contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs), as well as their commitment to full GMO transparency by 2018.
“With the growing concern among consumers about the inclusion of GMO ingredients in food products, this is a step in the right direction for transparency and the consumer’s right to know,” said Saffron Road’s CEO, Adnan Durrani.
In an effort to make their own contribution, Saffron Road recently released Chana Saag, the first Non-GMO Verified frozen entrée in the U.S. Saffron Road also has four other Non-GMO Verified products: Chana Saag Whole Wheat Chapatti Wraps and 3 flavors of Crunchy Chickpeas. The company will be coming out with four Non-GMO Verified simmer sauces later this year.
Earning the Non-GMO verification has been a big priority for Saffron Road, as part of their ongoing effort to provide ethical and sustainable products for consumers.