LONDON, ONT. -- With the new COVID-19 regulations, some may want to revert to 'happier times' by reading a familiar book, watching an old show on TV, while others may look to food for comfort.

Finding that popular candy from their childhood may just hit the sweet spot.

Andrew Ariganello and Nikita Ariganello, owners of the Sweet Life Candy & Pop Shop in London do just that.

"Andrew worked in management for a major grocery chain for over 10 years in the Toronto area, and Nikita was working two jobs, while in University; we decided we wanted to start something together, where we could bring our expertise and experience in one place and bring unique and fun candy and treats to London!"

Sweet Life candyWith years of experience between them, they brought Sweet Life to life.

Open for just over a year, Sweet Life started as a seasonal business in Sauble Beach. Both residing in London, they wanted to bring the shop to the city in order to be open year round.

"We wanted to bring a shop to London where customers could find all their favourite retro candies, but as well, new candy, confectionaries, and pop from around the world, all in one place - a 'one stop, candy & pop shop'!"

Sweet Life sells everything from confectionary to snacks from around the world. With over 2000 products, new and retro items are readily available.

With such classic retro treats as Tahitian Treat, the flat Neapolitan Taffy formerly known as 'Koo Koo bar', Cracker Jacks, Bottle Caps and even some UK favourites like Flakes, Curly Wurly's, and Jelly Tots, it's hard to say what their best selling treat is.

"We also bring in new, unique items that have been popular such as Pickle flavoured cotton candy, Dr. Pepper Cotton Candy, Pickles-in-a-Pouch, Dunkaroos, and the wide variety of chocolate bars from the States such as Birthday Cake and Apple Pie Kit Kat."

How has the community responded to their shop?

"We have received an overwhelming amount of positive support from the community. We have developed relationships with customers and other small businesses, over the span of a year of being open, and we've been welcomed into the community with open arms."

From hosting a food drive to a Halloween event, Londoners have enjoyed their collaborations.

Collecting donations

Of course, like most other companies, the pandemic has affected the storefront. As Sweet Life opened shortly after the pandemic began, they found they had to quickly adapt to new ways of selling their products.

"During the first lockdown, since it was such an uncertain time, and Andrew and I were working every day, we quickly adapted and made an online store, which is what we still use today. Because it was only Andrew and I working at the time, we felt it was safer to operate via curb-side pickup."

Once the family-run store was able to reopen, all proper health and safety protocols were followed. Their online store continues to thrive as they plan to launch Canada-wide shipping.

Whether guests are looking for nostalgia, or something to sweeten up their life, Sweet Life has them covered online or via curbside pickup.

"We love being a part of a tight knit community," says Ariganello. "Not only within London, but outside of London as well."