Uncle Joe’s secures first order from the other side of the globe in over a decade

Wigan’s famous sweet brand Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls has continued its post-Brexit expansion into international markets by securing its first order from New Zealand in more than 10 years.

The move comes in the wake of the free trade agreement between the UK and New Zealand, which was made in February 2022, and is due to come into effect later in the year.

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The agreement will remove all tariffs on trade in goods between the two countries, subject to “rules of origin” which determine where goods are deemed to come from.

John and Ant at Uncle Joe's Mint Balls.

The order for tins of: traditional, wildberry gin, dark rum, apple cider and sugar free Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls, is from Auckland-based Piccadilly Fine Foods, a tailored food and beverage importer focused on premium artisan international food brands and beverages.

The famous Wigan confectionary brand will also appear in the Kiwi company’s food catalogue, targeting retailers across New Zealand.

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Due to post-Brexit interest from international markets, Uncle Joe’s have also received new orders from Australia, the US and Denmark over the last few months.

Established in Wigan in 1898 by William Santus and Co Ltd, a privately-owned traditional sweet company, the ownership has been passed down through the family generations to now the joint managing directors, John and Antony Winnard, who are the great, great nephews of the company’s founder.

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120g Uncle Joe's tin and flow wrap sweets.

The Mint Balls are still manufactured using the same traditional methods as when Mrs Santus originally made the sweets in her kitchen in 1898.

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John Winnard MBE and Ant Winnard agree that Brexit and the end of Covid restrictions had created an increase in demand for their products.

John and Ant said: “This deal means that Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls will become much more widely available in a country where we know from the letters and emails we receive, that there is a large demand amongst New Zealanders and expats.”

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For more information on Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls and other products in the range, including a video of the production process: www.uncle-joes.com