CL Family Spotlight: Al's Popcorn
This week we coordinated with Sharon from Al's Delicious Popcorn from Columbus, Ohio. Al's Delicious Popcorn is truly an innovate of crunchy corn, making over 60 varieties of popcorn including caramel, vanilla butternut — even watermelon! Here's their story: Q: What's the story behind your business, and how did you get started? A: There really was an Al — who began this business in 1985 — when he was 70 years old! I knew Al well. When he passed away in 2004, my husband and I bought the business to save it. We had always said we would go into business together after our executive careers were done. Let me tell you, executives are not prepared to run a small business! But we were “quick studies” and we did save it. We now employ about a dozen other folks too!
Today three family members work in the popcorn: my husband Dick Schrock who delivers to Celebrate Local and manages finances, my mother June Elliott who does the bookkeeping and myself. We have a fabulous team of people ranging from high school or college students to retirees. Our popcorn chef has over 12 years of experience. This year represents 30 years in business for Al's Delicious Popcorn—something of a miracle!
Q: What makes your products unique? Our product secret is small batch, handcrafted, hand packaged gourmet popcorn in over 70 flavors! No one in the country does what we do, that is have more than 60 flavors in stock and fresh at all times! No one does so many flavors—although it is fun to watch bigger popcorn companies add—or try to add—a similar flavor when we introduce a new one. We are obsessive about our popcorn and constantly test, try, taste new flavors and new ways to package or make our popcorn.
Q: What do you like about being part of the Celebrate Local family? We love Celebrate Local! First because they celebrate and support the local producers but most of all because the CL folks are so wonderful to work with. Lynn and Lori are super! We go out of our way to get popcorn to Ruthie for gift baskets when she needs it and Ruthie keeps an eye on the popcorn and warns me if we need to restock or get something special for her. CL folks care about what they do—just like we do—and that is priceless!