The Business Year

Parviz Tavazo

IRAN - Agriculture

In the Family

Managing Director, Tavazo Dried Nuts

Bio

Parviz Tavazo was born in Tabriz in 1961. After obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in Electromechanical Engineering, he became Managing Director of Tavazo Dried Nuts in 1992.

How did Tavazo become the largest dried nuts retailer in Iran? We have about 70 years of experience with dried fruits and nuts. Around 13 years ago, when my father […]

How did Tavazo become the largest dried nuts retailer in Iran?

We have about 70 years of experience with dried fruits and nuts. Around 13 years ago, when my father inherited the business from his father, we thought for the first time about exporting. We began sending products to Germany, Sweden, Norway, and Canada. Tavazo has now been active in the export of dried nuts for 10 years, mainly to Europe and Canada.

What is the demand for your products in Europe and Canada?

We receive a lot of requests for dried fruits and nuts. In Canada, there are no pistachios or almonds. In the beginning, it was very hard to introduce the product to Canadians, but little by little, through marketing, the consumers became accustomed to eating a wider variety of dried fruits and nuts, which are natural and healthy. Europe is a better market than Canada, because the population is familiar with nuts due to the presence of countries like Turkey and Spain. For example, Turkey boasts pistachios, almonds, apricots, and many other dried fruits and nuts. It has the experience to export these products to Europe. We produce more, though.

How much do you export?

Tavazo offers a range of over 400 products. There are dried fruits and dried nuts, as well as spicy and sweet products. We regularly send 50 containers to Canada. Some products we must send quickly, as shelf lives vary. In this instance, we use airplanes for shipments. By ship, it can take up to two months.

How is the Canadian market different from the Iranian one, and how do you adjust your products to Canadian tastes?

Canadians like our products because they appreciate their natural health benefits. Some countries add dioxide or sulfide to apricots, for example, yet our products are 99% natural. With preservatives, a product can be stored outside of the refrigerator. With natural products, however, they must be cooled. This is hard, but 90% of people like natural dry fruits and nuts. The Canadian market is no different, and people appreciate natural products. We dry our products naturally, and we keep them cooled and export them in cooled containers. It is very expensive, but it is better for the customers.

What is the volume of your activity in Iran?

It depends on the product. For example, some people in Iran prefer to use mulberries instead of sugar in tea or coffee. Mulberries are very important. They contain a lot of protein, calcium, and sodium. You can only find them in Iran and Turkey. In Iran they are a different size. They are very large, and we dry them on the tree. We then sort and put them into the cooler in special bags. Mulberries are in season just once a year, and they must be refrigerated for the rest of the year. Pistachios are the same. The same procedure is performed with almonds and apricots.

Where are the various products grown?

Pistachios are grown in the east of Iran, northeast of Kerman. When the pistachios come in, they are all mixed, and we buy and sort them with our machinery. The smaller ones go to China because they like that size of pistachio. We keep the bigger ones and sell them in our stores. On the other hand, saffron comes from the north of Iran, near Mashhad. It is a world-famous Iranian product. Dates come from the south of Iran. And in the northwest of Iran and Azerbaijan, there are a lot of apricots, walnuts, almonds, cherries, blackberries, and mulberries. There are many groves and the people have a lot of experience in growing and drying everything. In the Kurdistan region there are famous figs, much like the Turkish figs. The yellow Iranian fig is very famous. A lot of our customers for this product are Korean, Chinese, and Thai.

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