|Privately held company|
Nói Síríus (Icelandic pronunciation: [Nói siríus]) is a family-owned chocolate and confection manufacturer in Iceland that was founded in 1920. Hallgrímur Benediktsson took over as main owner in the 1920s, and his grandson, Finnur Geirsson, is the company's current president. Nói Síríus is Iceland's biggest candy producer and its candies have been a traditional part of camping trips since 1933, along with stockfish.
The company produces Tópas and Opal, "fresh breath products" known for being somewhat bitter and soothing a sore throat with menthol and eucalyptus, as well as pastilles, sugar twists, assorted chocolates (a Christmas tradition) and Easter eggs. The chocolates come in dark and milk chocolate varieties as well as bars with nuts and raisins, whole hazelnuts, raisins and liquorice chips. The company also produces a "Little Imps" lines for children that includes "candy covered chocolate drops, hot and spicy pepper drops, fruity jellies with a candy shell or colourful little gum drops".
Nói Síríus candies are sold domestically in Iceland and exported, primarily to Russia and the United States. Smaller quantities are shipped to Denmark and the Netherlands under the Oxydent and Fakta brands.
In the late 1990s the company purchased Laima, Latvia's largest candy manufacturer, but sold the stake a few years later. In March 2006 the company bought English chocolate company, Elizabeth Shaw.
Chocolate is a mainstay of Icelandic culture. Eating a chocolate bar at 9 a.m. is culturally acceptable, intellectuals offer bowls of candy as an appetizer before dinner, and Nói Síríus produces 300,000 chocolate Easter eggs in a nation of 290,000 people. The Easter eggs are made at the company's Reykjavík plant, and a note with a saying is put into each egg.
Icelandic liqueurs bearing the Tópas and Opal name have also been introduced, achieving some acclaim, with filmmaker Quentin Tarantino's description of them as "the worst drink on earth" after an evening imbibing them.
The company also made news for a controversial marketing campaign and promotion stunt that had people join a Labor Day demonstration with signs labeled with Nói-Síríus-produced Tópas candy while shouting advertising slogans.
- A Sweet Friend of the Icelandic people; Nói Síríus expands beyond domestic shores Vol. 2 3-2006 page 13 October I&I (Issues and Images Iceland) magazine
- Icelandic Easter eggs at Whole Foods 25/02/2007 Iceland Review
- Michael Eaton Ex-Droste boss Bijma joins Elizabeth Shaw; Confectionery manufacturer appoints Bijma director of business development 19-Mar-2007 DFNI online
- Chocolate maker goes to Iceland 04-MAR-06 Europe Intelligence Wire
- Eye Candy Summer 2008, Vol. 8, No. 3, Pages 39–42 , DOI 10.1525/gfc.2008.8.3.39 August 7, 2008 Gastronomica
- Easter eggs February 4, 2007 Iceland Review
- Nói-Síríus criticized for advertising in demonstration 02/05/2007 Iceland Review