The 2012 Emery County Fair in Castle Dale, Utah will mark the 10 anniversary since Darcey Powell discovered an opportunity to establish an innovative homemade caramel confections business.
“I decided to rent a booth at the fair to sell plain caramel apples, something that every fair should have available,” said Powell. “The apples were so well received… I earned several hundred dollars and bought a new appliance for my kitchen! I pondered the thought of what could happen if I embellished the caramel apples with other toppings.”
Subsqeuent to her discovery, Powell established The Forbidden Fruit, a caramel confections manufacturer and distributor based in Cleveland, Utah.
Since the business was established in 2004, The Forbidden Fruit has flourished from a small home-based business into a well established sweet shoppe with a full commercial kitchen and boutique. Powell has created fifteen caramel apple flavors including “Strawberry Splendor,” “Glazed Pecan” and “Chocolate Toffee” which can be found online, in the sweet shoppe or through various vendors. The Forbidden Fruit also specilizes in gourmet chocolate candies and specialty items for holidays, weddings, and special occasions such as the birth of a new baby.
During the first few years of operating The Forbidden Fruit, Powell was a full-time college student and later became a third grade teacher for Sally Mauro Elementary School in Helper, Utah. By 2007, The Forbidden Fruit had grown to a point where Powell decided to stop teaching in order to give the business her full-time attention.
After receiving some assistance from the Business Expansion and Retention (Bear) program, Powell was referred to the Price Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for additional direction to further expand the business. SBDC Director, Ethan Migliori helped Powell generate new avenues for growth including; acquisition of a commerical kitchen, increased distribution to new business vendors, website optimization, and helped Powell access funding opportunities. “The SBDC helped me discover that my ‘sweet idea’ could be more than just a hobby,” said Powell. “They taught me that I could take the business to greater heights and offered me the tools to make it happen.”
In 2010, Powell moved The Forbidden Fruit out of her home and into a commerical kitchen—a major milestone that created an opportunity to sell products to other businesses and food suppliers. Presently, Powell’s caramel apples and candy confections can be found at Thanksgiving Point in Lehi, Associated Food Stores on the Wasatch Front, Western Nut Company in Salt Lake City, and at county fairs and large events hosted throughout the state. Powell has also helped her business grow through the development of new and innovative products such as the “Halloween Witch” the “Bride and Groom” set, and several other signature apple collections that can be purchased on the website and shipped anywhere in the continental U.S.
In recognition for Darcey Powell’s achievements as an entrepreneur, the Price Small Business Development Center has selected The Forbidden Fruit to receive a Small Business Award. For more information about The Forbidden Fruit visit www.caramelapplesandmore.com.