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Locally hatched business makes it to third round of Super Bowl ad contest

Local farmers Jason and Lucie Amundsen have something to cluck about.

Last week Budgeteer columnist Eddy Gilmore wrote about the Amundsens' egg company in a column titled, "A locally hatched business." In it Gilmore mentioned that the Amundsens' company made it to the second round of Intuit's Small Business Big Game contest. This contest gives small businesses a chance to win a free commercial spot during the Super Bowl in 2014. Earlier this week it was announced that the Amundsens' Locally Laid Egg Company advanced to the third round of this contest, making it to the top 20.

"Moving to the top 20 shows the support there is in this country for real food and sustainable agriculture," said Jason Amundsen, co-owner of Locally Laid Egg Company. "Throughout this contest, we've been touched by the goodwill of folks across the country who care about how their food is

produced."

Tens of thousands of companies entered the first round of this contest in August of this year; then 15,000 companies advanced to the contest's second round, which required the companies to write four essays and submit an introduction video. The third round has narrowed the field to the top 20 small businesses -- less than 1 percent of the second-round field.

Currently, Intuit employees are reviewing which of the top 20 companies will emerge to the final four. Public voting for the final four begins Nov. 11. The company that attains the highest vote tally between November 11 and December 1 wins the Super Bowl commercial. All companies in the top four will have a commercial produced, but only one will be aired during the Super Bowl.

The winner of this competition receives a Super Bowl commercial courtesy of Intuit, the makers of QuickBooks and other business software.

Locally Laid attributes its success so far to a strong online response, primarily via Facebook and Twitter.

"Folks voted and shared our posts everyday. Clearly they see LoLa as the perfect spokes-bird for a different kind of food system," said Lucie Amundsen, co-owner and the company's Marketing Chick. "We believe that a Super Bowl commercial would do wonders for the local food movement, environmental stewardship and, of course, LoLa."

LoLa is the acronym for Locally Laid and also the name of each of the 2,500 chickens on pasture at the company's Wrenshall farm. The company also partners with farms in Iowa and is announcing a new, Midwest farm in mid-November. Locally Laid also has a line of chicken feed for backyard hens called LoLa's Layer Mix.

To learn more about the ad contest or Locally Laid Eggs, visit: www.smallbusinessbiggame.com or www.locallylaid.com.

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