The mother of former LSU Tigers quarterback Matt Flynn is debuting a sweet treat in Baton Rouge, and her son’s former university is helping her get her product to the public.
With the help of the LSU AgCenter Food Incubator, Ruth Flynn has cooked up large batches of a white chocolate roasted pecan candy called Mama Roos—a name her grandkids gave her— and will sell the candy at Calvin’s Bocage Market.
If it’s successful, she hopes to bring two other candies to the wholesale market: A “freedom fudge” her mother-in-law made during World War II and a “puddle,” which is a simple twist on the praline.
“Hopefully Mama Roos will become the new Snickers,” says Flynn, who began the process to become a food incubator tenant in December and was accepted in March.
“Our food scientists and students helped her to scale up her recipe so that the taste was still the same when making large batches,” says Gaye Sandoz, director of the food incubator.
The incubator has also helped Flynn, a retired school teacher, design the packaging—along with help from her son—and get the candy on store shelves. It’s been a whirlwind experience for Flynn, whose candies are not entirely new to Baton Rouge and Louisiana.
She has been selling them at trade shows in the city and across the state since retiring a few years ago. Though she had started an event planning and personal gift business, Flynn turned her attention to candies after a client tried one of her puddles and told her she should focus on a food business. Flynn says she hopes to bring her other candies to market, but is focused on her Mama Roos for now.
“If the Mama Roos are successful and people like that product, I’m hoping that AgCenter will take the other two candies one at time and teach me how to make them in big batches,” she says.