L.L. Bean, lobsters and the new economy

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To ensure a supply for her lobster-roll chain and a supermarket line of lobster products, Linda Bean, an heiress to the L.L. Bean fortune, has spent millions to acquire and upgrade three wharves and buying stations, as well as a processing plant, on Maine's mid-coast.

She now plans to open a "lobster academy" for chefs, is seeking to trademark new names for lobster products and is pushing for the state's lobster catch to be certified as sustainable by a London-based environmental group, according to an article in The New York Times.

Her goal, she said, is to save Maine's most iconic industry by ending its dependence on Canadian processors and, under her Linda Bean's Perfect Maine label, to mass market Maine lobster.

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