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November 20, 2012If you enjoy having a Twinkie with your Thanksgiving meal, make sure you really savor the one(s) you have this year – they may very well be the last Twinkies you eat.
Twinkie-maker Hostess declared Nov. 16 they were shutting down the business, laying off all 18,500 workers and shuttering its factories. Twinkies and all the other brands Hostess has become known for will be sold to the highest bidder.
While Twinkies are nigh-indestructible, Hostess is not. The maker of the horrifically unhealthy foods has been in trouble for many years now, already going into bankruptcy court for the second time earlier this year. The growing healthy-eating and locally sourcing fad, coupled with increased competition in the snack-cake market apparently all contributed to Hostess's downfall.
The final nail in the Hostess yummy coffin was a labor strike, where workers demanded more pay and better pensions. While their demands may well have been justified, striking a company on its last legs does not put one in a strong bargaining position. A last-minute deal in September was rejected by the baker's union.
Hostess was started in 1930 and made iconic cake products such as Twinkies, CupCakes, Ding Dongs, Ho Ho's, Sno Balls and Donettes. Bread brands included Wonder, Nature's Pride, Merita, Home Pride, Butternut and Beefsteak.
The brands may be sold off along with the physical facilities of the company.
The wind-down of operations means the closure of 33 bakeries, 565 distribution centers, approximately 5,500 delivery routes and 570 bakery outlet stores throughout the United States.
That's a sour Christmas present for not just the workers at those factories and stores, but also the fans of Hostess products.
So when you next have that deep-fried Twinkie or Twinkie pie, be sure to savor it and remember how great it is. Because if Twinkies are made in the future (how else will we survive the apocalypse?) they could very well be with a different recipe, different taste and different (albeit more healthy) food-stuffs.