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Made in the Midwest: Candles the All-Natural Way

Posted at: 11/18/2012 10:44 PM
Updated at: 11/19/2012 8:50 AM
By: Ellery McCardle

(ABC 6 NEWS) – Black Friday is less than one week away, and up until then, it's a busy time for many retailers stocking up on gifts.

For Milkhouse Candles in Osage, IA, it’s busy cooking up flavorful scents.

One jar after another.

From citrus and lavender to caramel pumpkin, Milkhouse Candles is where your sense of smell comes alive.

The company makes 51 different fragrances.

Each jar is packed with a floral or flavorful punch and it's made unlike many you'll find in stores. They're made with a mix of beeswax and soy. The ingredients come from farms in the Midwest. The company says the candles are the cleanest burning on the market.

"It's nice to know you're making something American made that's made with American products," said Travis Beyer, of Milkhouse Candles.

"We don't use artificial dyes in our candles, we use cotton wicks in our candles, the soy and beeswax blend is a totally natural wax that burns cleaner,” said Eric Sparrow, president of Milkhouse Candles.

However, the shelves weren't always full. Sparrow says what began as a hobby with his wife, soon became his full-time job.

"We just started making candles because we enjoy making candles and one thing led to another and then we had businesses calling to purchase our candles," said Sparrow.

Since Milkhouse is one of countless candle makers in the world and candles aren't labeled a necessity, the focus is on slow, steady growth and keeping the integrity of its products through its local workforce.

"My family is growing so it’s nice to have that job security," said Beyer.

"We've got really great people working who are willing to come in everyday, who really take pride in what we're doing. Without that we wouldn't be where we are today," said Sparrow.

It takes about two days to make each candle. That includes labeling and cooling of the wax.

An interesting note, Sparrow says buyers in the U.K. prefer buying more floral scents, while people in the Midwest, prefer candles that smell like food.