Mayagüez dessert co. launches Chupalitos, plans to invest $600K in new plant
LAJ Investment & Management, a recently created family business based in Mayagüez, has just launched its first product called Chupalitos, while announcing plans to $600,000 through the end of the year to move to a larger production facility.
Chupalitos are a sorbet-like frozen treat, based on a family recipe. The frozen desserts are sold in supermarkets, gas stations, and convenience stores in a variety that includes low-cal, vegan, lactose-free and gluten-free. They are available in strawberry, coconut, piña colada, passion fruit, mojito, Nutella, cookies & cream and strawberry cheesecake flavors.
The production is currently located in a 1,000 square-foot plant at the Paseo El Litoral in Mayagüez, but plans call for soon moving into a 5,600 square-foot facility in the Mayagüez Free Zone.
José Julián Méndez-Rodríguez, president of LAJ Investment & Management, said the products are based on his mother Lourdes Rodríguez’s recipes, but “tempered by a millenial to new trends to revolutionize the ice cream industry.”
Méndez-Rodríguez explained that during the first two months of operations, the company met the goal of selling its product in 100 supermarkets, which they had set out to achieve by the end of this year.
They currently have seven employees and expect to hire more, and plan on exporting its products by next year, he said.
LAJ has partnered with dairy producer Tres Monjitas for raw materials and distributor GMT to get the products to retailers.