Once Upon A Pickle: A history of Quality Pickles
Twelve Years Back – The History of Quality Pickles
It was the year 2000 and the new millennium had brought along with it a range of new possibilities. For the Parker family and Quality Pickles founder, Mrs Soraya Parker, one such possibility was about to bring about considerable change to the family’s favourable culinary repertoire.
It was on the family’s annual holiday getaway that the concept of pickling was first mentioned. While relaxing in the warm baths of the Hex River Valley springs near Goudini, the family sought additional means to further expand on Soraya’s already endless talents which included baking, cooking and catering. At the time the family, like most families, were experiencing the stress of the new millennium and an additional income would have been gladly welcomed. Perhaps it was the warm mountain spring water that had them wrinkled up like dried prunes or perhaps it was just pure initiative but it was then that the idea formed in Soraya’s head: “When in a pickle…bottle it!”
And that’s formed the basis for the origins of Quality Pickles.
With the market chunk-full of existing pickles and achaars, Soraya realized that she needed a different approach: A product made with ONLY the freshest of vegetables and the finest of ingredients and flavoursome spices – a truly Quality Pickle.
Quality Pickles had its humble beginnings on very small scale:
Soraya would make, prepare and bottle the dried fruit, vegetable pickles and chilli chutneys. Her late father-in-law would then assist in deliveries to small businesses and retail outlets in the surrounding neighbourhoods.
Always a firm favourite amongst family gatherings, the phrase: ‘Proer jy net daai achaar!’ – ‘Just try that achaar!’ has since been the motto of the company.
As consumer demands grew, so too did the business and Soraya’s husband Riyaaz soon joined and overtook the logistics and buying. Additionally a bigger workforce was employed and the company soon saw itself expanding gracefully. It wasn’t long before Soraya’s son Shakeel joined the family business as the Company Director and a relief to his dad who now is now the full time Production Manager.
With new heads came new and fresh ideas. What started with three initial flavours has now grown to more than fifteen different pickle and sauce varieties. From tangy chutneys such as mango, kumquat, dried fruit, veg and chilli to zingy sauces such as the ever popular danya (coriander) sauce, tamarind, peri-peri, mebos (dried apricot), barbecue, pepper and samoosa dip, there’s a pickle to suit your every palate.
The pickles have no added preservatives apart from vinegar and our spices have been tried and laboratory tested to contain no artificial dyes or enhancements. The dried fruits and vegetables are of the highest grade, bought directly from the market.
Quality Pickles has firmly established itself as a leader in the condiment industry and is a welcome sight on any breakfast, lunch, brunch or dinner table and adds a tasty local depth to your cooking, grilling or braaing.
In a nutshell, that’s the history of Quality Pickles: home made in the traditional way with careful consideration before being bottled with love.