A sweet shop which came under fire earlier this week are defending their decision to sell a bag of crisps for £9.99 and cans of energy drink for £3.99.
Kingdom of Sweets opened on Princes Street on 10 August and went viral over the weekend as Twitter users accused the store of being ‘the ultimate Edinburgh tourist trap’ as they sold Flamin Hot Cheetos for almost £10 and Monster Energy for almost £4, but today owners Krystal Hart and Kelly Manders have defended their decision to sell their products at that price.
Kelly said: “You can’t please everyone, if the Cheetos were on sale for £3.99 people wouldn’t understand, and people don’t ask the question either.
“We import everything ourselves - there’s import tax, there’s sugar tax and the list goes on, we sometimes need to fly the product in.”
Krystal added: “We’re not buying in the same quantities as Asda, we’re paying a bit more and the products we have you can not get them here, they are something people want but nowhere on the high street has them, so you can charge a bit extra to get them and the customer doesn’t understand, we’re sourcing them from a place we cant even go to to get them.”
Kingdom of Sweets runs several stores around the UK on major streets including a premises on Oxford Street and Leicester Square.
Krystal said: “We’re looking for the best destinations, we already have places in London, Dublin, Cardiff and Liverpool, we want prime locations, we don’t want to be on a side street and paying little rent, we want a big shop and we’re happy to pay the higher price.
“You can’t get this size of shop on a side street.”
Kelly added: “In a smaller shop you can’t get this much product in.”
The two have ambitious plans to open up the lower floor of the store as a kitted out sweet shop and the upstairs as an ice cream parlour.
As well as American candy, the store also imports sweets from the rest of the world, including China, Australia, France and Spain.
“We sell things like Chinese Oreos, and it’s Chinese people buying their own product,” Krystal said, “They’re flying off the shelf and probably paying way above the price they’re used to.”
The shop has been slated for selling marked up chocolate from the UK as well, but say they want to be a ‘one stop shop’ for all sweets
She added: “I think the misunderstanding is that these are mainstream products, but what I would say is go buy it from somewhere else and see, turn it around and you’ll see that they’re not the same product.
“We’re not forcing anyone to buy them and we’re not saying you have to buy them.”
Kelly commented: “We don’t want to rob anyone, we want it to be an enjoyable place, we want it to be a one stop destination for sweets you’d be surprised at how much people do buy.”
Krystal added: “We’ve been called the biggest tourist trap in Edinburgh, I feel that people don’t understand that we’re everywhere we’re not just in Edinburgh.
“We’re not a tourist trap, we’re a tourist destination.
“Tell me somewhere else you can get Flaming Hot Cheetos, I’m not necessarily talking about the internet, but they’re not in local shops and I think that’s the hype, we’ve got something here and now that other places don’t have, and people want it.”
The store are adamant that they are here to stay. “We’re established and don’t want to fix something we know works.” Kelly commented, “We want to improve and learn from our mistakes.”