Little Lad's Garlic But-Tah popcorn. Credit: Emily Burnham / BDN

Little Lad’s, the Corinth-based maker of regionally beloved popcorn snacks, will this month open a new production facility in Vermont, which will allow it to expand its market into other areas of the United States.

Company founder Maria Fleming told the Portland Press Herald that when the new facility opens later this month, it will produce 2,000 pounds of popcorn in about five hours — an amount that would take the Corinth plant about a week.

The new Vermont facility will help Little Lad’s expand into the rest of the East Coast and into the Midwest market. Last year, it began selling its popcorn in Whole Foods Markets across New England.

The popcorn in the new facility will be produced in the company’s most popular flavors: Buttah, Garlic Buttah, Sea Salt and Olive Oil, and its most popular flavor Herbal Corn, made with Little Lad’s signature blend of nutritional yeast, herbs, salt and spices.

The Corinth facility will continue to produce popcorn solely for the Maine market, alongside Little Lad’s many other vegan products, including crackers, granola, veggie burgers and an array of baked goods. It also has a popular vegan cafe on site.

The Vermont facility will only produce popcorn, which will be packaged for the out-of-state market in colorful new bags designed to allow it to remain fresh on the shelves longer. Maine-produced popcorn will still be sold in the clear bags, since it is popped fresh and delivered to Maine stores quickly.

The company was going to expand in 2011 when it acquired a former golf tee factory in Guilford, but dropped those plans when Fleming and her then-husband, Larry Fleming, separated and eventually divorced in 2016. The Vermont facility will allow for that long-delayed expansion.

Little Lad’s was founded in Woolwich in 1995, and moved to Corinth in 1999, where it has occupied a turn-of-the-20th-century storefront for nearly 25 years.

Prior to focusing on retail snacks and other food products, Little Lad’s operated a chain of vegan restaurants throughout Maine and in New York City, including locations in Bangor, Portland, Lewiston, Brunswick, Skowhegan, Manchester and Presque Isle. The Portland cafe was the last to close in 2015.

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Emily Burnham

Emily Burnham is a Maine native and proud Bangorian, covering business, the arts, restaurants and the culture and history of the Bangor region.