Sharon Sullivanssullivan@gjfreepress.comGrand Junction Free PressStaff Writer

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April 5, 2012
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Watch out for Tattler Canning Lids

Tattler Reusable Canning Jar Lids has become a Colorado Business to Watch.Although no longer considered a start-up, Brad Stieg continues to runs his company out of the 2,500 square feet he leases from the Business Incubator Center on Orchard Mesa.At the governor's residence in Denver Tuesday, Stieg learned that out of 450 submissions, his business is one of 98 finalists to be recognized as a Colorado Business to Watch. Stieg believes his company stands a good chance to make the final cut of 50.Colorado Business to Watch "recognizes second-stage companies that are developing valuable products and services, creating quality jobs, enriching communities, and creating new industries throughout the state."These companies are growth-focused, privately-held, headquartered in Colorado, have six to 99 full-time equivalent employees, and earn $750,000 to $50 million in sales or a similar range of working capital, according to colorado.companiestowatch.org.Stieg's father Loren invented the reusable canning lids in 1976 during a metal canning lid shortage. They sold well until the shortage ended, Stieg said. But Loren never gave up the idea of selling his product, and in February 2010, he and his son formed a partnership and started making the lids again. They've sold like hot cakes ever since.They advertise in magazines like "Mother Earth News," "Hobby Farms," and "Countryside." Once clients started blogging about the lids, sales increased even more."One of our customers is featured on the National Geographic Channel's new program 'Doomsday Preppers,'" Stieg said. "This woman uses a lot of our product, and people see it, and comment on our Facebook page," bringing more valuable publicity to the company.Metal canning lids are not designed for reuse - thus the advantage of the plastic lids, which are BPA-free and approved by the Food and Drug Administration for direct food contact, Stieg said.Also known as S & S Innovations, Tattler Reusable Canning Jar Lids employs six part-time and four full-time people. Packaging is done by Mesa Developmental Services clients, and half the manufacturing is subcontracted out to Granite Plastics in Grand Junction. The remaining manufacturing takes place at the Business Incubator Center headquarters.Largely an Internet business the first two years, the business is in the process of expanding into large nationwide retail outlets like Ace Hardware and Do It Best stores. The lids are also sold at a number of smaller retail outlets.


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The Post Independent Updated Apr 5, 2012 09:55PM Published Apr 5, 2012 09:54PM Copyright 2012 The Post Independent. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.