This story is not about a city, town, village, or a castle; this story is about a place and a company. In this journey we will make a little stop and discover the Fazer Experience Visitor Centre and find out why it is worth our attention. However, let us have a quick look at history of Fazer.
Karl Fazer founded the company in 1891 in the heart of Helsinki, the current capital of Finland. Having studied in Paris, Berlin, and Saint Petersburg, Fazer became inspired to open its own French-Russian confectionary in Helsinki, thus becoming a pioneer in this business in Finland. Karl was the youngest of the eight children of Eduard Fazer, a Swiss man, and his Swiss-born wife. Back in those days the pastry profession was not popular, but Karl Fazer wanted to pursue his dream, despite his father being not too happy with the son’s decision.
On September 17, 1891, Karl Fazer’s Confectionery opened its doors on Kluuvikatu, in the centre of Helsinki. Since then, the company has expanded worldwide and has its operations in the Nordic and Baltic countries, Russia, and Japan. Fazer has its special limited line for North America, which might become popular outside the continent.
“Fazer Blue” milk chocolate (“Fazerin Sininen" in Finnish or "Fazer blå" in Swedish) became the most recognizable Fazer product and, in a way, iconic. Blue was chosen as the main company colour for its logo, which is also one of the two colours of the Finnish flag.
As we can see now, the company was a huge success with its difficult times and brought us lots and lots of products, for instance, vast line of Fazer chocolates, candies, cakes, plenty of kinds of bread, etc. In addition to that, Karl Fazer produces different seasonal flavours, such as chocolate Easter eggs, or Christmas special. Being one of the largest food industry companies in Finland, it is also one of the oldest companies of this field.
Nowadays, Fazer also has a chain of work-place restaurants, cafés, bakeries, and shops. It is highly likely that you have visited one of Fazer restaurants if you ever studied or worked in Finland; they are tailored for the needs of students and workers, taking time, amount of people per hour, and budget of costumers into consideration, that is why they are called work-place restaurants.
Undoubtedly, Karl Fazer has become one of the national treasures for or, in a way, unspoken symbols of Finland. Fazer has high importance for Finns and plays one of the crucial roles in the country’s food industry and its economy. Reasonably, staying true to and emphasizing the core Finnish DNA of the company, at Fazer only local Finnish ingredients are used, but except the cocoa, which cannot be grown in the Nordic climate.
In order to commemorate the company’s 125-year anniversary, the Fazer Experience Visitor Centre was opened in the autumn of 2016. It has already attracted thousands of visitors and gave them a chance to try new products, which are tested there before getting to the market. The excursions are carried out in several languages (check the website) and each day. During the one-hour excursion you will get familiar with the company’s history, techniques, processes, and a short movie about the Karl Fazer. In the end of the excursion you have two surprises, which will keep visitors happy. Moreover, under the same roof there is also space for meetings and events.
The visitor centre is located in Vantaa (agglomeration of Helsinki) in a beautiful area, to which you can either get by car (or taxi) or public transport. If you choose public transport, there are plenty of options available either from the Helsinki city centre or airport.
To conclude this story, it is worth to mention that this particular company and place (Fazer Experience Visitor Centre) was chosen as one of the points of interest for our journey because it helps to comprehend what Finland is and what is the Finnish spirit, its identity better; however, the location is not central and thus often left out from the touristic programme. Here the purpose was to give you a little idea of what you can discover going beyond the limits of the central area. Enjoy the visit and follow more journeys with Travel Smart!
Address of the Fazer Experience Visitor Centre: Finland, Vantaa, Fazerintie 6.
Contact information: website.
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