Snappy Popcorn is the Official Popcorn Supplier for Iowa Select Farms
Pop quiz: which Iowa company is the official popcorn supplier for Iowa Select Farms? It’s Snappy Popcorn, a third-generation, family-owned company in Breda.
“Snappy Popcorn is our go-to for employee gifts and bright, seasonal mixes for the families of the Children’s Cancer Connection,” said Jen Sorenson, communications director for Iowa Select Farms.
Iowa Select Farms also distributes over 7,500 coupons to their employees and contractors for popcorn balls at Snappy’s Popcorn Stand at the Iowa State Fair.
Snappy is also the official supplier of Iowa State University Athletics. “Whether you go to an Iowa State game or a high school sporting event and buy a bag of popcorn, there’s a good chance you’re eating Snappy Popcorn,” said Jon Tiefenthaler, owner of Snappy Popcorn.
Snappy Popcorn also distributes 50,000 to 100,000 samples each year during the Iowa State Fair, providing a taste of Iowa agriculture for people across Iowa and beyond. The company’s “popcorn pigs on a stick” were a hit at the 2017 fair. “Popcorn is associated with fun,” said Tiefenthaler, who noted that top-selling flavors include butter, extra butter and kettle corn.
Snappy Popcorn’s roots run deep in western Iowa. “My grandfather ran a tank wagon fuel delivery service,” said Tiefenthaler, whose grandfather, Art Tiefenthaler, and great uncle Raymond Tiefenthaler founded Snappy Popcorn in 1940—the era when Iowa was the number-one popcorn-producing state in America. “After a customer paid a fuel oil bill with popcorn, this inspired my grandfather to get into the popcorn business.”
Growing popcorn is similar in many ways to producing field corn, although careful management is required to produce the highest quality popcorn. Snappy Popcorn has grown much of its popcorn locally for decades. “We’re close to our producers, since a lot of our popcorn is grown within five or six miles of Breda,” said Tiefenthaler, who added the company also works with popcorn farmers across Iowa, Nebraska and Colorado.
Popcorn is the only product processed at the plant in Breda, where approximately 50 people work for Snappy Popcorn. Snappy Popcorn products, which are known for their freshness and excellent quality, can be found across Iowa in Fareway grocery stores and in Hy-Vee stores under the brand name Ellie Mae’s.
“Iowa Select’s values are similar to ours,” Tiefenthaler said. “They understand the importance of Iowa agriculture. It’s also great to see how they support other Iowa companies.”
Many of these companies are located in rural communities like Breda, population 477, which boasts many thriving companies, including fire truck manufacturer Toyne Fire Apparatus, Western Iowa Networks telecommunications and Snappy Popcorn. “We’ve opened a lot of doors for some substantial growth,” Tiefenthaler noted. “We look forward to working with other ag companies like Iowa Select Farms as we produce high-quality food.” #HomegrownIowa