Cousins Jim Tselikis and Sabin Lomac brought a little taste of their native Maine to Los Angeles two years ago with the launch of their food truck business, Cousins Maine Lobster near Miracle Mile.

Now, they’re casting a wider net as they plan to roll out eight franchised food trucks across the country by January. Like their own trucks, the new franchises will only serve genuine Maine lobster, sourced directly from Cousins Maine.

The company already has experience shipping its products – including lobster macaroni and cheese and, yes, live lobsters – across the country.

Cousins Maine has a prep kitchen and packing facility right on the wharf in Portland, Maine. The facility ships lobsters to Los Angeles for the company’s four trucks here, but also ships to Cousins Maine Lobster customers who order live lobsters online.

Tselikis said it’s not an easy task to ship live lobsters across the country, but it’s made easier by connections back in their home state.

“For us it was more feasible because of what we have that most others don’t – the connection to the source,” he said. “We grew up there. Our parents are still there. And it’s allowed us to work with friends and family and bring it across the country.”

Tselikis, 30, and Lomac, 33, co-founded the company in 2012. It operates four food trucks throughout Los Angeles. New franchisee-operated trucks will soon serve eight more cities, including Dallas, Phoenix and Atlanta.

– Subrina Hudson

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