EASTPORT, Maine -- October 1, 2012 -- Maine and its Canadian neighbors have a tightly linked and sometimes
confrontational relationship when it comes to the buying and selling of
lobsters. One Eastport entrepreneur decided to take what he learned from
his Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, counterpart and construct a state-of-the-art
onshore lobster pound based on a design concept fully implemented
throughout the Canadian Maritimes.
David Pottle is a born businessman who was raised on the water.
According to his father, Basil Pottle, "When he was in eighth grade he
would go to school all week and then fish with his brother on the
weekends, making more money than his teachers."
For the past 25
years, David Pottle has gained a reputation as a highly competent
fisherman, skilled owner of a construction company and a responsible
lobster dealer. Starting with two small storage tanks at his Perry home,
he began buying from his fellow lobstermen. He then sold in volume to
his distributor, the Milbridge facility of Inland Seafood, a food
corporation based in Atlanta.
During the past seven years, he
watched his home-based business grow to nine tanks with a capacity to
hold 9,000 pounds of lobster.
"People hear by word of mouth [about your reputation] and then want to sell to you," he says.
Pottle is preparing to open a new lobster pound in Eastport this winter
that increases his capacity by more than tenfold. Unlike most lobster
pounds in the area, Pottle's new operation is a land-based design that
integrates refrigeration to keep a lobster fresh and healthy for up to
three months from the time it is caught.
Pottle first became
interested in land-based lobster pounds when he visited one owned and
operated by Wade Nickerson at SeaKist Lobster in Nova Scotia. The idea
stuck with him, and as his business grew, he thought a land-based
operation was the best opportunity to expand.
Modeled after the
Nickerson plant, Pottle's 6,000-square-foot Lighthouse Lobster and Bait
facility is located on the south end of Moose Island in Eastport. The
three-acre property was acquired from the city in May 2010 with a bid of
"It is not often that a property so ideally situated
becomes available. I had an idea and I went at it," he says. Pottle used
his own money to purchase the property first, then sought loans to
combine with his own funds to secure the $1.2 million he needed to set
up the business.
Read the full article at Mainebiz