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Fatimas’s Samosas is a small, family owned business headed by husband and wife team, Afzal Fazal and Yasmin Kouser. The idea of starting a business came out of the blue, when Yasmin was asked by her daughter to step in at a food stall event she had organised when another business had dropped out at the last moment. Their daughter knew how incredible her parent’s Samosa recipe was, and she had great confidence that the event would run smoothly with them involved. Sure enough, the samosas were an absolute hit and the couple realised they had the potential to begin a new venture in something they were deeply passionate about.
Yasmin then spent a great deal of time perfecting an age-old recipe, which had been kept in the family for years and passed down through the generations. They wanted to adapt the recipe to be suitable for freezing, in order to appeal to their target market. The business launched in December 2015 and after a short time, Fatima’s Samosas developed a loyal fan base. With the uniqueness of creating traditional and authentic Kashmiri Samosas, they found there was a huge gap in the market for their product and the business took off.
Fatima’s Samosas are committed to ensuring that their food is of the highest quality at all times. They believe they have perfected their recipe and that consistency throughout production is of the highest importance. They are also keen to demonstrate to their customers that frozen food doesn’t have to be bland or of low quality. Their ingredients are locally sourced, and they ensure that their products are free from preservatives and additives. Their products are currently all handmade and distributed locally, retaining their unique charm.
Business Growth & Future Goals
The business faced a few obstacles when first starting up. After meeting with an environmental health officer, it seemed impossible that they’d be able to run the business from home whilst being HACCP Approved. This was something that had never been done before, but determined to keep costs low in the beginning, Afzal was not discouraged. He went about investing in equipment and preparing his kitchen to meet all of the requirements. An inspection was carried out and they were so impressed with the changes made, the business became HACCP approved!
The business has been progressing quickly and is currently in very high demand. They have recently moved to a larger premises and are now looking at new equipment, as their current production process is very labour intensive. Their new premises will also allow the business to begin distributing their products on a national level. All being well, they are also hoping to begin exporting overseas within the next 18 months.
Whilst being involved with SIAFS, Fatima’s Samosas have attended multiple workshops, including Scaling Up, Exporting, SALSA and Sales Training. The Scaling Up workshop has allowed the business to think about alternative equipment and the ways in which this can help the business expand their customer base and take on more orders. The Exporting workshop was especially helpful, as they were able to discuss their goals, challenges and how best to move forward with industry experts from the Department of International Trade..
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