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Small Business Spotlight // Meet Maryland-Based Popsations Popcorn Owner Robin Garrison

FILED IN: Small Business Spotlight

Posted By: Jamie Kutchman

Today I'm honored to feature Maryland-based small business Popsations Popcorn! Owner Robin Garrison reached out to me shortly after the Marigold & Grey website launched, offering me the chance to try her popcorn. Once the samples arrived in the mail a day or so later, I was immediately hooked. It was delicious and quite unique too! The Crabby Caramel flavor combining iconic caramel popcorn with a hint of Old Bay seasoning....brilliant! I also thought her snacks looked awfully familiar. Then it hit me! I'd seen her adorable popcorn bags on Shark Tank a little while back. (Yes, I'm Shark Tank obsessed!)

It didn't take me long to realize that we should partner. Her thriving company makes delicious, handcrafted, gourmet popcorn in adorable packaging (my total weakness!) while my business has the platform to reach brides and easily get the product into wedding welcome gifts for them. I recently had a nice little Q&A session with Robin and learned a ton about her and her up and coming popcorn company!

maryland-small-business-popsations-popcorn Photo: Loyola Magazine

What were you doing prior to starting Popsations Popcorn Company?

I was very fortunate to be a stay-at-home Mom for seven years.  Before that, I worked in the Marketing and Advertising field for fourteen years.

What made you decide to start Popsations?

My husband and I have always had a love of and passion for caramel popcorn. While traveling to other cities we would always find freshly made caramel popcorn to satisfy our craving.  One day we started dreaming about introducing handcrafted gourmet caramel popcorn to Baltimore.  Our city didn’t have local gourmet caramel popcorn made in small batches.  We decided to combine our passion for popcorn with our desire to deliver smiles and Popsations Popcorn Company was born in 2010.

What are you most proud of since starting Popsations?

I am most proud of creating a delicious, handcrafted snack that keeps people coming back for more.  Popsations gourmet popcorn has become a popular gift, a fun snack for corporate meetings, a unique favor for weddings, a local favorite in wedding welcome bags, and has been used in popcorn bars for many different kinds of special events.

What are your biggest challenges in starting and running a small business?

One of the biggest challenges starting the business was figuring out all the regulations of the food industry.  Having little background in this industry I spent many hours researching and networking with other small businesses.  Ongoing, one of the biggest challenges is balancing the needs of my business and the needs of my family!

What are your goals for 2015 for the business and personal?

We plan to continue to develop new flavors and expand our retail operation in 2015.  On a personal level my goal is to spend quality time with my husband and children.

How do you come up with your flavors?  What inspires your creativity?

Our flavors are influenced by local tastes and trends.  Our Dark Chocolate Caramel Drizzle was born from a love of dark chocolate.  We created our Crabby Caramel flavor in 2013 as a result of a love of all things Maryland. I was born and raised in Baltimore and crab feasts were a frequent highlight of our summer weekends.  I decided to add a hint of Old Bay to our light, buttery, crunchy caramel popcorn.  Our Crabby Caramel instantly became a hit and is now one of our most popular flavors!

Anything else you'd like to share with us?!

I would be remiss if I didn’t thank my friends, family, neighbors and other local businesses for their support.  Popsations Popcorn Company would still be a dream without their help!


Keep your eyes on the blog for even more small business spotlights!

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