Detroit Popcorn Company sells after social media comment caused boycott

Melody Baetens
The Detroit News

The former owner of Detroit Popcorn Company has reclaimed the business after comments from owner Evan Singer on social media resulted in a boycott and caused the company to lose accounts. 

David Farber has come out of retirement and has repurchased the 97-year-old business, according to a statement issued by the company Tuesday afternoon. The media alert says Singer is no longer affiliated with the business and holds no interest in the company. 

This hometown popcorn tin is a popular item at Detroit Popcorn Company.

“I was very disheartened and disappointed in what Mr. Singer wrote on Facebook,” said Farber in the release, which explains that Farber wants to now sell the Redford-based company to African-American investors.

“I don’t tolerate racism in any form, ever. Detroit Popcorn Company is closed in the short term until we can assess the best way to move forward and also facilitate a sale. Mr. Singer disrespected our community, customers, and employees. I could not tolerate this behavior at a company that I once owned, therefore, I decided to buy back the company.”

Eater Detroit reported the boycott, which stemmed from comments made on Facebook by an account with the name "Even Sangria," that was linked to Singer. According to Singer in an interview with Fox 2 Detroit, he was reacting to a video of damage to a Target store when he wrote "they wonder why they need knee’s on there necks (sic).”

Eater Detroit also reported that Quicken Loans will no longer work with Detroit Popcorn Company, and the Detroit Zoo announced the attraction has "cut ties" with the company. 

The Detroit Popcorn Company should not be confused with the Motor City Popcorn Company, which had to post a video to Facebook Monday explaining they are not responsible for Singer's comments. 

"Please understand that we are separate companies and that we are black owned," Motor City Popcorn posted.

The Detroit-based sweet shop specializes in gourmet flavors like jalapeno, sour cream and chive, strawberry shortcake and "8 Mile Mix" with white cheddar and caramel. Motor City Popcorn is currently closed through mid-June, according to its website, but is typically sold at several locations around town, including Laurel Park Place Mall in Livonia. 

The backlash against Detroit Popcorn Company also caused issues for another local popcorn maker. The owners of of Poppin’ & Mixin’ Kettle Corn also operate "The Detroit Kettle Corn Truck," which is a seasonal vendor at the Detroit Zoo, and say they've been mistaken for Detroit Popcorn Company this week.

Twitter: @melodybaetens