Q: How did this book come about?
A: The idea grew out of the photos. We had a need for the organization to do some basic photography to document some of the work we were doing on different farms. We engaged Bridget for that project, and had no idea that it would develop into something more extensive. We were really impressed with the quality of the photos, and that led to a showing. We have a small gallery at our headquarters, and we have shown the photos there and at a few other places, the Frontier at Brunswick and the statehouse. And that led to the idea of a book. It really was an evolution rather than a plan.
From here, the Portland-based company, launched 55 years ago from the back of a truck, cooks up 900,000 pounds of frozen prepared food every week, fighting for market share in the $31.7 billion frozen food industry and the roughly $20 billion food service industry. Barber competes with such mega corporations as Tyson Foods, Perdue and ConAgra Foods.
Bean spent her first year in the business learning everything Albano could teach her. Today, she said she depends heavily on CEO John Peterdorf’s knowledge of the lobster market. But she is very hands-on in other aspects of the business. She works the crowds at trade shows, dollops lobster into rolls at country fairs and studies the fine print in all her business contracts.