We had the good fortune of connecting with Bruce and Beth Telford and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Bruce and Beth, what do you attribute your success to?
There are many people who produce the type of product we have, however our love of cooking and willingness to try different flavors has led Sweet Almande to be unique in the industry. We both enjoy cooking so developing new recipes for our product, as well as how to use our unique flavors in other recipes has been part of our focus. Interacting with our customers at farmer’s markets, craft shows, trade shows, etc. is always a joy, so it is really the best of both worlds.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Bruce is a retired Air Force Master Sergeant with 23 years of service. After retirement he was offered a position with a government contractor, which ended seven years after his retirement. We learned about the nut business from some friends we knew from the Renaissance Festival, and eventually purchased our first nut roaster, and the rest is history. Both Beth and Bruce were cast members of the Renaissance Festival at the time. Bruce spent 15 years as a cast member, and Beth was a cast member for 27 consecutive years. During part of this time, Beth was a legal assistant for more than 20 years, and then spent 22 years as a massage therapist after her time with the legal business was done. Because of injuries and/or stress on her physical abilities, she retired from massage and has been managing Sweet Almande ever since. She and Bruce currently do approximately seven farmer’s markets a week in order to bring their product to the public. Our brand, Sweet Almande, offers approximately 30 flavors of almonds, pecans and cashews which sets us apart from any competition in our industry. Even when we were just doing this part time, we continued to develop new recipes, because we enjoyed the challenge. The fact that this is a German water based roasting process, makes us a great choice for vegetarians and vegans as well. We are also dairy free, and gluten free, and strive to make sure that all of our recipes meet these standards, as Beth is gluten free, and Bruce doesn’t tolerate dairy very well.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Even though some of our favorite restaurants have closed due to COVID-19, some of our favorite hang outs have survived. We give a big shoutout to Sam’s No. 3 on Havana and Parker. Another for a somewhat fancy meal is Le Citron of off Hampden and Yosemite. Of course, having been involved in the Renaissance Festival for 27 years, I would make sure that a visit to the Kingdom of Larkspurshire would definitely be on that itinerary.
Denver Museum Art, the Zoo, especially for Christmas lights, and botanical gardens, and the Denver Museum of Science and Nature. Plus on a slightly selfish note, there are a lot of farmer’s markets we just might be at. There are also great parks and bike trails to explore.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Absolutely our son, Ryan. We were a part-time business and still worked full time on the side. He encouraged us to rebrand our business, capitalize on our recipes and hard work and has supported us throughout our efforts to build the business. Without his encouragement, support and creative input, we would still be a part-time business that not many people know about. Now we are in two stores, the Local in Parker and Southlands and our online business has increased. He is the driving force behind the graphics and general appearance of our brand.
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