RTC Students Start an Organic Candy Business: GURAM

Looking to sending unique new year gifts to loved ones? Then you’ll love these organic candies made by an enterprising young group of students from RTC.

Photos by Kinley Wangchuk & story by PemC

19 year old Phuntsho Dechen Yangchen and 20 year old Deepshika Chhetri are students from the Royal Thimphu College studying finance, who recently started GURAM, an all sweets-and-candy business with one more friend. “This business idea sprouted from the international business challenge called the Mekong Business Challenge. Our team ‘Guram’ represents RTC,” said the girls. “The idea initially started when the three of us wanted to participate in the business challenge called the Mekong Business Challenge. So we assessed what the problems in Bhutan were, and we noticed that almost all the candies in Bhutan are imported and very unhealthy. So we figured that since Bhutan is famous for having unique herbs, we can try making candies out of it. We have been working on this idea for the past one and a half year.”

What makes their candy so different? Infused in the homemade caramels are bits of healthy herbs and spices like cardamom, cloves, ginger powder and Piper pedicellatum from Samtse, a unique antioxidant plant known to have medicinal properties. “Currently we are making caramels which has three flavors. They are ginger-flavored, papilla flavored and all spice-flavored caramels. We are planning to make lollipops and energy bars in the near future, we are currently working on the flavor profiles of these candies. We also have different packaging for different flavors in small Desho paper bags. And are using boxes for customized orders.” added Phuntsho.

With honey replacing most of the sweetness in the candies, GURAM promises a healthier alternative to our sweet tooth. “Honey constitutes 60% of our caramels, and due to this fact consuming our candies helps in meeting many health benefits such as healing gum diseases (one in every 4 Bhutanese have some form of gum disease), cold and sore throat. The herb that we use called papilla (scientifically known as Piper pedicellatum) helps in digestion and treating spleen-related disorders. Ginger helps in reducing motion sickness and healing common cold. All-spice (contains cardamom, cinnamon and clove) acts as a mouth freshener.” said Deepshika. The girls dream about launching their business officially soon and hope that by encouraging people to consume candies made in Bhutan, we will import less from outside.

You can order your batch from GURAM by calling 17548050.

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