COL­LECT­ING WITH…

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Dar­ling Sweet founders share their tof­fee tins

A mix­ture of caramelise­d brown sugar and but­ter, tof­fee had been en­joyed for many years be­fore The Ox­ford English Dic­tio­nary pub­lished the word in 1825 and iden­ti­fied it as ‘taffy’.

In the 1830s, when it was dis­cov­ered that food could be safely stored in metal pack­ag­ing, cook­ies and choco­late were sold in tins. By the late 1800s, Bri­tish tof­fee mak­ers started of­fer­ing their prod­ucts in tins as were no­table early man­u­fac­tur­ers such as Mack­in­tosh (1866) in Hal­i­fax, York­shire, and Walker’s Non­such in Long­ton, Stoke-on-Trent, Eng­land, founded in 1894.

From the early 20th cen­tury, tof­fee mak­ers brought out col­lectable tins with sen­ti­men­tal im­agery such as vin­tage cars, puppy dogs and roy­alty.

Fa­mous South African brands in­clude Sharps, Wil­son’s and Kilty’s Tof­fees. Most of these small pri­vate man­u­fac­tur­ers are no longer around, or in some cases have been bought out by in­ter­na­tional food brands.

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