Rademaker is the manufacturer of the beloved Haagsche Hopjes, the famous Dutch candy renamed after Baron Hendrik Hop. From 1782 to 1792 Baron Hendrik Hop was the Dutch ambassador in Brussels. However, when that city was occupied by the French revolutionary troops, he was called back to The Hague. Here Baron Hop moved into an apartment above the bakery and confectionery shop ofVan Haaren & Nieuwerkerk. By the 18th century coffee was known as a remedy for different aches and pains. Baron Hop, who himself suffered from gout, was also an avid coffee drinker. On a cold winter night he drank the stuff with cream and lots of sugar, because he that it would work analgesic. When he had drunk his cup half empty, he put the remainder on the stove and went to bed. The next morning Baron Hop discovered that his coffee had changed in a hard lump, which nevertheless still tasted delicious.
Hop then asked the confectioner Nieuwerkerk to make the candy that he himself called "De Swarte Oostervogt-chunks. From time to time Baron Hop would leave The Hague for diplomatic travels but he always ensures to take some of his coffee candy chucks with him. It is through his travels that the candy was introduced to princes, diplomats and nobles across Europe, who themselves quickly became addicted to the Hopjes candies. This ultimately resulted in the industrial manufacturing of the sweets, not just to the Dutch Royal family but also to customers in neighboring Belgium, England, Germany, Denmark and even as far as St. Petersburg. Soon thereafter the candies became known as chunks of Baron Hop. Around 1880 the candies were again renamed to Haagsche Hopjes.
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Following the success of Nieuwerkerk and the failing prices of coffee, around the turning of the 19th more and more Hopjes manufacturers arose. It was estimated that in 1900 around 60 companies were active in the production of the candy. By far the biggest competitor of Nieuwerkerk was Rademaker. Rademaker became very popular as he wrapped the Hopjes individually in printed paper making the candy more convenient for individual consumption. By 1949, the last descendant of the Nieuwerkerk family passed away and the business was taken over by Rademaker. In 1971 Rademaker itself changed ownership when it was taken over by Belgian Continental Sweets. Subsequently Rademaker was acquired RBV Leaf a daughter company of CSM in 1999. Today, Rademaker forms part of Swedish candy manufacturer Cloetta.
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