Sesame Indicum is one of the most ancient herbs known to man. Archeological findings indicate that this sesame was in use in the area of Turkey as long ago as 3000 BCE. In ancient times, sesame was known as the food of the gods. Even then, its healing and medicinal qualities were recognized. Sesame seeds are rich in protein, calcium, vitamin B, amino acids and unsaturated fats belonging to the Omega 6 and 9 groups. There are those who claim that “the drips of the honeycomb” mentioned in our sources, are the Halva of today.
New immigrants from Turkey, Greece and Russia, come together in a small apartment building in south Tel Aviv. As people who have made Halva in their countries of origin, each of them comes with his own methods for manufacturing it and the special flavors that have been passed down in their families from generation to generation. This amazing gathering of the exiles that takes place in the factory leads to the name “Achva”. Three years later, the first mayor of Tel Aviv – Yafo, Meir Dizengoff, names the street in which the factory was located “Simtat Beit Habad” after the products that were made there. The street still exists to this day. As mentioned, the sesame that served as the main raw material, was bought by the factory owners, once a month, at the markets of Damascus and Beirut.
From the Bialik School on Levinsky Street in south Tel Aviv, convoys of armored vehicles travel to the besieged Jerusalem via the Burma Road. Among the main food products that sent to the capital, were made up of Halva and Tahini made by Achva. The Achva Halva and Tahini become the childhood taste for many of the country’s residents. Thanks to its nutritional and medicinal properties, Halva becomes the main foodstuff on the Israeli menu in those days.
All those who were children at the time, will remember their sandwich bags containing “jam day and Achva Halva day”. Halva becomes the popular foodstuff of every household. Since Halva contains vitamins, minerals and the major food groups, it became a basic food at breakfast time, and every sandwich that was prepared for children in their food bags, contained Halva. Even then it was known that Halva was the sweetest health food and the heathiest candy.
When the first Intifada breaks out, and the Arab markets stop buying Israeli produce, and the decision is made in the factory to invest resources in exporting the factory’s produce. The factory becomes a regular participant at international food exhibitions worldwide, investing considerable resources in developing new products, and upgrading packaging and manufacturing standards to the highest quality. Results are not slow to come. Since then and to this day, the factory has been regarded as a manufacturer of excellence, exporting its products to many countries, from Australia and New Zealand, through to South Africa and Europe as well as North America.
The factory, which has been based in south Tel Aviv and Yehud, moves its facilities to a spacious building that brings all the production lines under one roof. Since 1929, and until today, the traditional method of production of Achva Halva has remained unchanged. The superior flavor and texture have remained the same, alongside the health benefits that come from Achva Tahini, which makes up about 50% of the Halva. The factory has increased its production and is entering new markets in Israel and worldwide.
Despite the depression in the Israeli economy, the decision is taken to develop new products. A modern pastry shop becomes an overnight success. The quality of the products is high, and they are priced for everyone’s pocket, opening new possibilities for the factory. The factory’s exports rise considerably, and it starts to manufacture around the clock to meet the demand for its products.
At its current location, the factory appears to be too small for its large volume of activity. The factory purchases a plot of land on which it builds one of the largest and most modern food factories in Israel. The factory’s variety of products includes: Halva, raw Tahini, organic products, sugar-free products, a variety of sponge cakes and yeast cake, home-made cakes, drinking syrups and a variety of candies. Our customers include: the major marketing and private networks, airlines, the institutional market, grocery stores and selected consumer stores, government bodies, distributors and marketing networks overseas. All of the factory’s products are Parve and under the supervision of the Badatz of the Eda Haredit. Achva will continue to banner its product as being at a price that is acceptable to every pocket.
84 years after it was established, the factory and its owners receive a lifetime achievement award for industry from the Food Union and the Manufacturers Association of Israel. The award is made to the owner of the factory who also serves as its CEO, at the food congress for the new era held at the Conference Center in Kfar Maccabiah. More than 40 years after starting out from a small factory in south Tel Aviv, the factories are very impressive: Spotlessly clean, innovative equipment, high quality products while maintaining consumer-friendly prices. It goes without saying that there is a quality of employees in the factory that is found only in a factory of the caliber of Achva. Towards the end of the year, the factory also received recognition from the Blue and White Headquarters of the Ministry for Economy. The “Distinguished Blue and White Purchaser” prize was awarded in recognition of the increase in procurement from Israeli industry made by the factory.