If you’ve been to the Nordics, odds are you’ve tried licorice. In today’s episode, we dive into the story of the luxury licorice and chocolate company Lakrids by Bülow. Johan Bülow started cooking licorice in his mom’s kitchen on the Danish island of Bornholm in 2007. Fast forward to today and they’ve become an iconic brand with sales in 35 countries and counting. Their mission: to make the world love licorice. This episode traces the evolution of the company, diving into valuable lessons around food entrepreneurship, branding, and sales.
Analisa Winther, Nordic FoodTech Podcast Host 1:36
I think we should start by talking about the fact that licorice is a very beloved Nordic confectionery. But it’s also the kind of thing that people either love or hate and it can be very controversial. So given this, what on earth made you go, “I want to start a licorice company.”
Johan Bülow, Lakrids by Bülow. 1:58
First of all, I’m from a family of entrepreneurs. Actually, my mother told me since I was a very young boy to go out there and create something for myself, something to be proud of. So since I was a very young boy, I’ve been thinking about what to actually do with my life. And I found out that I needed to create something new and something that was mine, a project that was mine. When I was 21, I was staying at my uncle’s. He had like a small niche production of rocks and I sold that. And he showcased it to all the tourists coming into the store and people went crazy buying these rocks. I saw that and I love licorice and I thought, “There might actually be a new category for gourmet licorice if you just look at the ingredients and you improve it and you work with the experience, etc, etc. So I got the idea when I was 21. But I think I have thought about the idea since the age of eight or 10 or something like that. Because my mother told me to really– the perfect situation would be to work with something you love and do it every day. Yeah, that would be the perfect position for me.