7 April 2023

Riverina Made: 'Chocolate is the ultimate gift': Neil Druce of Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory

| Shri Gayathirie Rajen
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Rhiannon (far right) with her family Dean, Coral, Neil, and Mitchell.

Neil (middle) with his family Dean, Coral, Mitchell and Rhiannon. Photo: Junee Licorice & Chocolate Factory.

Who are you and what is your business? Neil Druce and I’m the managing director at Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory.

Where did you begin? It began in 1998 when I purchased an abandoned flour mill in Junee. I was brought up on our generational family farm in Ardlethan and resided with my wife and children. I fell in love with the building and wanted to create something beautiful. Fast forward to now and I’m still in love with our building and passionate about enhancing the experience at our factory for all tourists and locals.

READ ALSO Five minutes with Rhiannon Druce, Junee Licorice & Chocolate Factory

What do you produce? We produce organic licorice and chocolate products.

What do you sell that makes a great gift? Chocolate is the ultimate gift, 97 per cent of the world craves chocolate so I think that makes it quite a good choice.

Neil Druce

While growing up Neil was never allowed lollies or sweets. Photo: Junee Licorice & Chocolate Factory.

Where can we buy your products? At our factory in Junee, online or at stockists throughout Australia and internationally.

How would you promote the Riverina? The Riverina is such a hidden gem that really goes under the radar within Australian tourism. It’s the food bowl of Australia and it needs to be promoted accordingly. We need to create an original ad or social media campaign that showcases the passion our producers have for their arts.

An assortment of chocolates

Junee Licorice & Chocolate Factory has delicious Easter egg chocolates for all. Photo: Junee Licorice & Chocolate Factory.

Coolest local thing you’ve ever bought? Definitely an abandoned flour mill in Corowa on the bank of the Murray River for $1. My son Dean has created a whisky distillery within it.

Where’s your favourite place for a cuppa? I really enjoy going for a drive in my old cars out to Coolamon and having a chai latte at Station Collective. They’ve created a lovely destination out there.

Who is another local producer you admire? Anyone in regional towns willing to give it a go, when we all inspire each other to create beautiful venues and experiences, great things happen for the region.

READ ALSO Riverina Made: Meet the makers of Wollundry Grove Olives

To learn more about Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory and what they offer for Easter, click here.

Bookings are strongly recommended for those planning to visit the factory to dine at the restaurant over the Easter long weekend. Click here to book a table.

Region Riverina is committed to celebrating our local producers and creatives and encourages everyone to buy local.

If you’re aware of someone who’s making something amazing, let us know!

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