SOUTH PORTLAND – Ice cream in flavors like sea salt caramel-almond, cardamom-ginger and chocolate-covered strawberry will soon be scooped up and shipped out from a retail shop and production facility off Highland Avenue.

Maple’s Organics hopes to open in its new spot on Gary L. Maietta Parkway — just down the road from the Recreation Complex at Wainwright Farms — in time for April school vacation.

The new location will replace Maple’s Organics’ facility on Forest Avenue in Portland and the retail shop in the Old Port that it closed in September in anticipation of the move to South Portland.

The wholesale operation is at the heart of the four-year-old company’s business, said Kristie Green, the owner. But, in her new location, she’s happy about the retail customers that the nearby residential areas, the athletic complex and the Greenbelt may provide.

“I’m really excited about what this space means for sharing what we do,” she said.

Maple’s Organics — named after Green’s border collie — specializes in ice cream made from scratch with local and organic ingredients.

In the new space, retail customers will be able to see how the ice cream base is cooked in big pots, how flavorings like raw sugar caramel are made, and how ingredients like peanut butter cups and cookies are stirred into the frozen mixture. The shop will also offer baked goods, coffee and other beverages.

The 1,800-square-foot building provides a better space for the growing business.

Green declined to say how much ice cream the company produces, but she said its products are now sold in about two dozen Whole Foods stores from Providence, R.I., to Portland, and by some independent grocers.

“It’s exponential how much it’s grown,” she said.

Maple’s Organics is one of two Maine-made ice creams that Whole Foods in Portland sells in scoops, in addition to its house brand. Maple’s Organics is also in the supermarket’s freezer section.

The store’s gelato buyer especially likes that Maple’s uses as much local product as possible, said Barbara Gulino, marketing team leader for the Portland store.

“Maple’s Organics has been with us since we opened in 2007,” Gulino said.

“When we get a product we really like, we start recommending it to our other stores.”

The company’s move from Portland to South Portland began last weekend.

On Tuesday, Green and Ren Floyd, the production manager, were busy dealing with their equipment.

Some issues still need sorting out, including the name of the retail shop and the question of selling pizza.

Pizza was made in the building in the past, and the equipment is still inside. Green’s family is in the business — her grandfather founded Angelone’s after World War II — so she has the background.

 

Staff Writer Ann S. Kim can be contacted at 791-6383 or at: [email protected]