Mom’s Organic Munchies planning move to Brunswick

Betty Crush, founder of Mom’s Organic Munchies. Courtesy of Mom’s Organic Munchies

Mom’s Organic Munchies, which produces plant-based, low-sugar snacks, is planning a move to a larger in space in Brunswick as it targets shelves in Walmart, Target and Costco.

Betty Crush started the company in her Freeport kitchen after she said she was diagnosed with celiac disease and experimented with creating gluten-free snacks that she could tolerate. The company — now based in a Freeport production facility with nine workers, including Crush’s son, Craig — produces bars, cookies and fruit/vegetable bites that are available at Whole Foods and Amazon.

The business has grown in recent years and wants to expand to other stores such as Walmart, Target, Costco, Food Lion and Kroger, according to a memo to the Brunswick Town Council by Sally Costello, the town’s director of economic and community development. Mom’s plans to lease a production facility from Maine Food Group on Industry Road, where it can hire three full-time employees to increase production capacity and attain food-safety and gluten-free certifications required to be considered by larger food retailers, according to Costello. The business wants to partner with the town to apply for a $100,000 grant to pay for new equipment.

“The grant will fund key equipment purchases to facilitate greater efficiencies in the production process and will result in a higher volume of goods produced necessary to meeting the projected demand and anticipated growth in sales accounts with larger retailers,” Costello wrote. “Its labor force will provide both direct and indirect benefits to the local economy.”

Mom’s and Maine Food Group plan to share ingredient, equipment and preparation space “to enhance production capacity for both businesses,” Costello wrote.

The Community Development Block Grant is paid with federal funds administered by the state. The Town Council on Tuesday is expected to set a public hearing on the grant application for Sept. 18; the application deadline is Sept. 22.

Crush could not be reached for comment Friday. She told the Portland Press Herald in 2011 she started the company in 2010 using raw, vegan ingredients with no gluten, refined sugar or dairy. Her first product was the goji/pistachio bar.

“People who didn’t need to eat it kept asking me for some,” Crush said at the time.

The company’s current products include Sweet Potato Apple Bites and a pecan cookie.

In May, Mom’s Organic Munchies was named Maine Small Business Manufacturer of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Crush told the Portland Press Herald she uses only “really, really expensive ingredients” and won’t compromise on that.

“The whole concept is to put love into everything I create,” she said.

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