Nebraska popcorn company expands in China

A company from a small town does big business internationally, and now pops its healthy snack with an office in China.

Norm Krug of Preferred Popcorn said, “We have been blessed enough to export our popcorn all around the world -- 70 countries.”

Including China, where Krug says it's a new concept to enjoy this treat at the movies.

“Unlike Americans, they're just learning to enjoy this healthy snack,” he said.

And the company is now opening an office in far northwest China to reach people with their story.

“The message is the same all over,” Krug said. “If you just treat people with integrity, tell them the truth, and give them what you say you're going to give them, those are the fundamentals that are important all over the world.”

Krug supports the Trans Pacific Partnership, which has been much-maligned this election year.

He says trade deals level the playing field.

“American farmers can compete with anybody in the world, but we can't compete against governments. That's where we really need to focus, encourage our leaders to focus on free trade,” he said.

Krug argues trade brings money back, allowing him to expand.

He said, “We had three employees in one little office and now we have over 80, raising popcorn in ten states.”

It all starts on the farm, and much of what they grow is exported.

Krug said, “We have bought so many things in my life that say made in Japan, or made in China, or India, so it's fun to have some wires and money come back the other way.”

And with expansion in China, Preferred Popcorn is likely the only business in Chapman, a town of 287, with an office overseas.

“That's probably true, might be a safe bet,” he said with a laugh.

Krug said all popcorn is non-GMO and he said they use no-till and other conservation-minded farming practices.

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