Premium sweet brand Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls has shifted production to its Throat And Chest and Herbal Cough lozenges to help people suffering from the effects of coronavirus.

Bosses at Wigan-based William Santus and Co Ltd, which produces the iconic Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls, have also stepped up its online sales and delivery service as more and more people self-isolate at home.

Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls are made by Wigan-based William Santus and Co Ltd, a privately-owned traditional sweet company that was established in 1898. Its products have always had a reputation for helping soothe the effects of a cough and cold and were even advertised as a remedy in the 1930s.

The throat and chest lozenges contain menthol to ease a sore throat and eucalyptus to tackle fever, and the herbal cough sweets contain a blend of ten different herbs which includes horehound, which eases lung and breathing problems.

John Winnard, Joint Managing Director of Uncle Joe’s, said: “Uncle Joe’s have been helping people to tackle coughs and other symptoms since they were first made, and Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls themselves contain peppermint oil, which can help ease a cold.

“Although people can still buy Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls in the normal way, in the light of the current situation with coronavirus and the number of enquiries we have been receiving we have decided to dedicate more production to our Throat And Chest and Herbal Cough lozenges.

“It is important to point out that we are not claiming the sweets can tackle the COVID-19 virus but we hope they can sooth some of the symptoms or our online service can allow people to enjoy some sweets delivered to their door.”

The ownership of William Santus and Co Ltd has been passed down through the family generations.

The Mint Balls are still manufactured using the same traditional methods as when Mrs Santus originally made the sweets in her kitchen in 1898.

In April last year HRH Prince Charles enjoyed a tour of the Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls factory in Wigan to celebrate the centenary of The Toffee Works.

He saw how the sweets were manufactured and met Joint Managing Directors Antony Winnard and John Winnard MBE, the great, great nephews of the company’s founder, William Santus.

The completely natural “secret recipe” has been passed down through the family generations. Uncle Joe’s Mint Balls contain no artificial additives or colours, they are GM free, gluten free and are suitable for the vegetarian/vegan market.