About Linda Bean’s Maine Lobster
This new business innovation is a mobile delivery system intended to crisscross American cities and regions in women-operated increments, growing organically from a start in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
The concept is designed as a national buildout by its founder Linda Bean for her existing Maine lobster and “Perfect Maine” brand initiated in 2007. Chief Executive of Sales and Operations is Christina M. Hughes, an entrepreneur from New England who moved to Myrtle Beach in 2020 for a public school system she liked for her daughter. The new company is a member of the Myrtle Beach Chamber of Commerce.
A sizable leased warehouse anchors the Myrtle Beach delivery hub with an initial fleet of three Lobstermobiles™ purchased locally and designed for Myrtle Beach neighborhoods delivery coverage as a strictly mobile business with friendly personal shopper service for those living and working at home, providing them unique access to a direct supply pipeline from Maine.
The “all Maine, all the time” products center around authentic Maine lobster purchased daily right off the boats by Bean Maine Lobster, Inc., the founder’s employee-shareholder owned ESOP company headed by wholesaler John Petersdorf, that packs and ships into Linda’s vertically integrated supply line from Rockland, Maine, the lobster capital of Maine and home of the famed annual Maine Lobster Festival.
Many ask if this is the same Linda L. Bean as the L. L. Bean company, outdoor outfitters in Maine. Linda served on its board for 46 years but she is that founder’s granddaughter. His company was incorporated in 1912; hers 110 years later in 2022.
In 2007 Linda took a strong interest in helping to brand and advance Maine lobster, a year when landings by all licensed Maine fishing family boats totaled 68 million pounds. During her years of operations and expansions, Maine’s landings have doubled, pushing the need for creative marketing, thus spawning Linda’s latest idea.
With John Hathaway, owner of Shucks Maine Lobster, Linda led the successful campaign to investigate the sustainability of wild caught lobster on the Maine coast, a lineal examination of some 3600 shore miles over 6 years. In 2013 the results were in and Maine gained international certification of sustainability by the Marine Stewardship Council in London, England, as announced by Maine’s Governor Paul LePage at the International Boston Seafood Show. Linda and John were also the first in the United States to innovate the “Mother Shucker,” a high-pressure process substitute from releasing lobster from its shell without boiling. The company received the Prix d’Elite award at the International Seafood Exposition in Brussels, the first-time raw lobster was ever produced without the shell attached, creating a new product with which chefs could innovate new recipes.
All Linda’s lobster that is not sold wiggling is processed using the HPP methodology, a humane treatment without boiling. She relies on only Maine processors to do her raw frozen and cooked fresh and frozen lobster.
With Covid home employment and home delivery, Linda’s new lobster marketing concept took shape. Being already third generation in the home delivery of Maine products from LL Bean, her father’s design of the Bean Boat & Tote bag in 1945 is perhaps the hottest Maine product today with monogramming innovations making national news. The upshot is that the Bean business family is an “idea” business engine for Maine with a corporate culture centered on collaborative design and service that buyers rely on with trust and effective communication that engenders repeat customer loyalty. Linda’s businesses spring from and strong and personally involved marketing heritage.
Linda new lobster delivery concept includes a women-enabling feature to reintroduce to the American workforce those who stayed home to raise their children and now wish to re-enter their skills in an exciting, meaningful, timely way when home delivery of healthy natural foods and pure spring water from iconic Maine is highly prized.
For those visiting Maine, Linda’s springboard restaurants that invite diners with her family recipes and local ingredients are Linda Bean’s Maine Kitchen & Topside Tavern seating 240 in Freeport, and Ogunquit Beach Lobster House, seating 200 seasonally on beautiful Ogunquit Beach. In Port Clyde she leases her Dip Net restaurant on the village dock to an independent woman chef/operator, Lexi Zable. These locations have joined in selling several million of Linda’s “Perfect Maine Lobster Roll” since introduced with her secret herbs dressing recipe on the LL Bean campus in 2008. Her lobster roll has been featured at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival, on the beach at Hull, Massachusetts, on Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach, Florida, on the island of St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands, and in Portland, Maine where in 2009 Kraft Foods joined Linda, baker John Amato and Lobster Chef of the Year Margaret Salt McLellan in breaking the world record for the World’s Longest Lobster Roll: 61 feet, 9 1/2 inches filled with 45 pounds of lobster.
Linda’s philanthropy with her sister, Diana, is centered on Life Flight of Maine medical helicopters and emergency airlift medical teams and equipment; twin helicopter landing pads atop the Coulombe Family Tower of the Maine Medical Center, Portland; cafe enlargement for the Maine Botanical Gardens at Boothbay which attracts 300,000 annual visitors; an upcoming St. George School System building and k thru 12 program leading to post-secondary education in skilled Maine trades at the MidCoast School of Technology, Rockland. Additionally, Linda has a lifelong interest in Maine art and New England history. For the last 20 years she has been advancing the merits of the life, career, and art of illustrator/artist Newell Convers Wyeth (1882-1945), for which she has initiated the N.C. Wyeth Research Foundation & Reading Libraries, a private non-profit entity that is building or restoring Wyeth properties in Port Clyde, Maine, in Wilmington, Delaware, and in Needham, Massachusetts.
Linda’s board/trustee positions have included The Maine Chapter of the Nature Conservancy, the Brandywine Conservancy & Art Museum (PA), Portland Museum of Art, Collections of the Maine Historical Society, Eagle Forum Education and Legal Defense Fund (MO), Intercollegiate Studies Institute (DE), and L. L. Bean, Inc (ME/America/Japan).
She was educated in K-8 public schools in Freeport and Yarmouth, Maine, Oak Grove School for Girls (9 & 10), the Waynflete School (11 & 12 classical studies) and Antioch College business and accounting, Yellow Springs, Ohio, class of 1964). She married first in 1963, bearing three sons; in 1975-85 to Maine farmer Verne Jones; and as a widow, a third marriage from 1990-2007. She has 3 grandsons and a granddaughter.
Christina M. Hughes, Chief Executive of Sales and Operations for Linda Bean’s Maine Lobster, Inc. resides in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, having grown up in Massachusetts and worked in Maine. She was graduated in 1994 from Natick High School, and from Massachusetts Bay Community College School of Business Management. She started her career as account coordinator in MA, CT, RI, and NY for Estee Lauder Companies, followed as Director of Victoria Secret Beauty at the World trade Center, executing its launch and opening, gaining $15 million in volume for the company, hiring and recruiting over 120 employees and 4 co-directors, training and developing staff and executing market strategies. She advanced to become national trainer and artist responsible for 33 Nars Cosmetic stores in Boston, CT and NY, negotiating space and locations for major retailers including Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdales and Sax 5th Avenue. For Laura Mercier Cosmetics, Boston, she was responsible for $9 million in regional sales, managing 32 stores in MA, CT, RI and NY, between 2005-07. After moving to Maine, she opened studios in Skowhegan and Bath, Maine, owning and operating her own tattoo art business for 14 years. A political conservative, she ran on the Republican ticket for a seat in the Maine Legislature in 2020 before moving to more politically aligned South Carolina. She looks forward to her career leading Linda Bean’s Maine Lobster national buildout.