by Betsy Natter
Some folks dream of travel, gardening or simply taking it easy during their retirement years, but one MontCo resident started her own business.
After seven years of providing “ridiculously delicious” snack pretzels to her family and friends, Lynn Kriebel finally took their advice and started selling her snacks to the public. She officially opened OMG Pretzels in 2014 offering her gourmet flavored sourdough pretzel nuggets in select stores and online. Since then, sales have doubled yearly and the company is excited to hit the $100,000 mark as they enter their fifth year of business.
Lynn is the mother of four children and 13 grandchildren. In her early years she worked as a nurse, but most of her adult life she was a stay-at-home mother, caring for her growing family. Her pretzel snack recipes were an extension of that as she baked unique flavorings into her treats. As her daughter Stephanie says, “they are handmade with love.” Years later, that same care goes into every bag OMG Pretzels produces today. The company was named “OMG” because anytime someone ate one, they couldn’t help but exclaim, “Oh, my goodness!” Taking advantage of the phrase, the company coined its name.
A True Family Business
OMG Pretzels is a family business in every sense of the word. Although Lynn is the official owner, many members of the family and friends help with the details of production, operations and marketing. Daughter Stephanie, who lives in California, oversees operations and works remotely to grow the business. She researches and contacts potential merchant partners, sets up tasting events and makes sure that everything is flowing smoothly.
Son, David, handles the technical side of the business, managing the company’s website and online sales cart. Lynn’s husband assists with shipping and delivery of orders and a million things in between. Even the grandchildren get involved when they are free from their studies at school. Several of the girls have done tasting events during their college breaks, eager to promote their grandmother’s business.
Family friends have also joined in the effort and have truly been integral to the success of the company. When the business first began, many of Lynn’s friends volunteered to help get things up and running. Today, many of them continue to gather on baking days, enjoying the kitchen comradery while fulfilling weekly orders.
Growth & Expansion
As with most businesses that start at home, increased sales put pressure on production space. Lynn still mixes up her secret recipe seasonings in her home kitchen in Plymouth Meeting. However, the company now rents a larger commercial kitchen at a nearby synagogue in order to handle the high volume of weekly baking. Within the coming year or so they hope to have their own commercial kitchen location which will allow them to further scale up production.
While the pretzels are available for purchase online, the focus of OMG’s sales is to partner with small local merchants such as beer distributors, high-end groceries and specialty food stores throughout the area. Additionally, a distributor has moved the snacks into New Jersey and Maine. In the coming months, Central Markets, a group of gourmet grocery stores in Texas, will also begin to carry OMG snacks.
OMG pretzels come in a variety of flavors like garlic, Sweet & Salty, Old Bay, Sweet & Spicy or Cheddar Jalapeño. For more information about where to purchase the snack treats, visit the website at www.omgpretzels.com.