Demand for LL Bean boot marches on

LEWISTON, Maine (AP) — The holiday season is over but demand for L.L. Bean’s famous boot marches on.

The company currently has a backlog of 51,000 orders that it intends to fill in the coming weeks. A company spokeswoman says harsh winter weather and the boot’s ongoing popularity are driving demand.

The Maine-based outdoors retailer is taking steps to address ongoing backlogs.

It has leased a larger, 110,000-square-foot building and plans to install a third injection-molding machine to manufacture the rubber soles. It’s also hiring more workers.

Annual sales for the boot have grown from fewer than 100,000 a decade ago to more than 600,000 this year. The company expects to top 700,000 next year and 1 million in 2018.

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