IRVING, TEXAS - If striking Teamsters Union workers don't return to work by 5:00 PM Thursday, Twinkies may be history. Acting on numerous warnings that its facilities would close if the Teamsters continued their ongoing strike, Hostess Bakeries shut down plants in St. Louis, Seattle and Cincinatti Monday, cutting over 600 jobs.
Now, with an ongoing strike called by union employees, the company that makes Twinkies and Ding-Dongs is threatening to liquidate. The Teamsters are calling what they say is the company's bluff. Hostess says that they've been trying to keep the facilities open through union negotiations, although Teamsters represent about less than a third of the company's payroll.
“We deeply regret this decision, but we have repeatedly explained that we will close facilities that are no longer able to produce and deliver products because of a work stoppage — and that we will close the entire company if widespread strikes cripple our business,” Hostess CEO Gregory Rayburn said in a statement.
Wholesale baker Hostess Brands, which is based in Irving, Texas, filed for bankruptcy in January and has fought with labor groups over contract changes throughout the year.
Thousands of members of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union went on strike beginning on Friday at plants across the country, including Oakland, Calif.; Seattle; and Orlando, Fla. The union represents about 5,680 of Hostess’ 18,300 employees.
More on strike on Reuters.