San Augustine bakery hits the sweet spot for community

Jodi Johnson, owner of Pinto Pony, announces the company is expanding
Jodi Johnson, owner of Pinto Pony, announces the company is expanding

SAN AUGUSTINE, TX (KTRE) - A San Augustine business is baking their way into an expansion that is set to keep residents working closer to home.

Pinto Pony Cookie Factory started up about four years ago with about 10 workers baking cookies and now breakfast bars.

Today the company's CEO announced plans for a new facility that will eventually employ more than 100 workers.

Jodi Johnson was told to be successful and that she should take her cookie business to a big city.

She didn't and now she's set to bring more than 100 jobs to San Augustine.

"Pinto Pony can be to San Augustine what Hershey was to Pennsylvania. You just need one good idea, one opportunity and an entire town believing in it and I think you can make all the difference in the world," said Johnson.

At a chamber meeting this morning, Johnson announced Pinto Pony Cookie Factory would be expanding.

They plan to break ground on the new facility in mid-August...adding about 60 jobs on the first hire and another 50 down the road.

"It's neat seeing them come in and  fill out an application," said Johnson, "there are a lot of kids who think that they have to when they leave school go to a big city to work and that's not necessarily the case."

Johnson's mother is the county judge and says this news could be a springboard for more growth in the small community.

"San Augustine has been a really well-kept secret," said San Augustine County Judge Samye Johnson, "we have everything that you want to be and have for your company here and other people are finding that out now, and I love that."

The cookies are shipped across Texas, but they're hoping the treats will become a national favorite.

"I want everyone to be able to recognize the Pinto Pony logo just as easily as they would recognize Kraft or Hershey's," said Johnson.

With sweet dreams and a recipe for success, Johnson hopes the news will keep residents closer to home and make them proud of their community.

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