A maker of gourmet popcorn and popcorn seasonings is moving its business to New Haven from Chicago and expects to create up to 50 new jobs by the end of 2024, state officials announced Thursday.
Dell Cove Spices & More Co. also plans to invest up to $233,000 in the operation that uses certified-organic spices, sugars and sea salts to blend popcorn seasonings. The company also works with Midwest farmers to grow various popcorn varieties “for unique food gift sets,” according to a news release.
The salt and sugar blends can also be used to decorate the rims of cocktail glasses and to season steaks and salmon.
David and Patricia Beets founded the company in Chicago in 2010 after a friend suggested their homemade gifts would be a hit with consumers.
“New Haven is the perfect place for us to grow the company,” said David Beets, a Fort Wayne native. “It puts us much closer physically to some of the popcorn farmers in Indiana and Ohio, with whom we want to work. The fact that the city is also a major transportation hub makes it fairly simple for us to be able to bring in raw materials and helps lower freight costs.”
Dell Cove employed six in Chicago, including the Beetses. David Beets said the location was too expensive for the company to scale up there. The couple also has family and friends living in this area, including two granddaughters.
“Every time I would come back here to visit, this whole area seemed to keep growing and growing – and we wanted to be part of that growth,” he said in a statement. “It felt like a perfect time to come home.”
The company has moved into a 7,000-square-foot space at 1221 Hartzell St. in New Haven. Plans call for installing warehouse and computer equipment and photography studio supplies, labeling equipment and a laser-etching machine to customize glass jars.
Dell Cove hopes to hire up to 50 new employees in sales, warehousing and shipping jobs beginning in the fall. Full- and part-time positions are available. Wages will start at $10 to $15 an hour, depending on the position and the applicants' experience.
The Indiana Economic Development Corp. offered Dell Cove up to $255,000 in conditional tax credits, based on the company's job creation plans. The credits are performance-based. Northeast Indiana Works will provide hiring and training assistance.