Hostess shutting down, liquidating brands

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Reported by: Ian Silver
Updated: 11/16/2012 7:22 pm Published: 11/16/2012 6:23 am

The maker of Twinkies and Wonder bread said Friday morning it's time to close its doors for good.

That means more than 18,000 employees, including roughly 160 in Tulsa, are now without jobs right before the holidays.

Bankrupt Hostess Brands announced Friday morning it's asking the court for permission to shut down and sell its assets.

According to the company, production of all of its brands has ceased. That caused a mad rush for people to buy as many boxes of products like Twinkies and Ding Dongs as they could before they're gone.

But for those losing their jobs, losing Twinkies was the least of their concerns.

"We're all pretty sad, because we've all known each other numerous years and seen people's kids grow," Doyle Briggs, an employee of Hostess' Wonder Bread bakery in Tulsa, said.

But after 26 years at Wonder Bread, it's time for Briggs to move on.

"It was a great place to work until, you know, corporate greed took it over," he said. "They wanted to put more money in their pockets."

"Shame on Hostess," he added.

And after 54 years of baking bread at corner of 11th Street and south Sheridan, many in Tulsa will be sensing the loss.

"The smells, you know," Briggs said. "People say oh, you work for Wonder Bread? It smells so great."

Starting Monday, 160 workers will have to start over.

"I would think there would be companies out there that would want good, quality people to come work for them," Briggs said.

"We'll land on our feet," Jeff Evans, also an employee at the Tulsa Wonder Bread bakery, said.

Evans already has landed on his feet, even after 20 years at the plant.

"Hopefully something better will come out of this," he said. "I saw the writing on the wall a year ago and started school. So, I just finished my last class last night, so perfect timing."

And while most of the others will have to file for unemployment, Evans and Briggs said none of the workers involved in union strike that led to Hostess's closing have any regrets.

"We still feel like we did the right thing," Briggs said. "We stood up and said we're not going to take what you're trying to shove down our throats."

"I think it was worth it."

Hostess employed more than 18,000 people at 36 bakeries across the country.

This was the second bankruptcy the company had gone through in the past 10 years.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

MrEuphoric1 - 11/18/2012 9:05 AM
0 Votes
ITS not just hostess your losing, It's WONDER BREAD, HOMEPRIDE WHEAT, and all the other cheap private label breads you all buy and eat.

ellen - 11/18/2012 8:13 AM
0 Votes
The real tragedy is the loss of the outlet stores which served the thrifty, the retired, or simply hungry with affordable 'day old bakery items.' If the union folks didn't want their jobs, God knows there is enough unemployment to go around, I am sure the jobs would have been welcomed by many.

aleman - 11/17/2012 10:19 AM
0 Votes
I bet if it were employee owned it wouldn't be union,the union strangles every company that uses them,they always want more even during a bad economy and they are like vampires once you let them in you can get rid of them until they bleed you dry which is their sole intention

CowBot9000 - 11/17/2012 6:41 AM
1 Vote
Sirtigo wins Funniest Comment of the Year award.

Sirtigo - 11/17/2012 1:08 AM
0 Votes
Maybe these employees can form together submit for loans & buy the company then run the business themselves!!!???

aleman - 11/16/2012 2:40 PM
0 Votes
A sad day for those with clogged arteries,diabetes,fried out kidneys,and a major blow to obesity,many tears will be shed ,expect there will be a last minute run on the stores for what's left so unless you can get out of the way of an enraged 400 hundred pounder real quick best not go to the store for a couple of days,think Black Friday is bad you watch there will be many deaths over this

mustangdriver - 11/16/2012 1:30 PM
0 Votes
Stupidity at its finest. Their union bluff obviously did not pay off haha. I haven't bought a hostess product in a long time, so could care less if they close down. It's just the fact that cases like this, union greed, that are causing the outsourcing of products. People want "Made in the USA", but they are not willing to pay extra for it. So keep on shopping at walmart folks, the chinese are loving you for it.

james340 - 11/16/2012 11:34 AM
0 Votes
woohoo! now you can sign up for 99 weeks of unemployment and become another burden on society. what a victory for the unions running another business into the ground. gotta love hope and change.

brookebusby - 11/16/2012 9:14 AM
0 Votes
well looks to me like someone hasnt been doing what there supposse to do with the money i mean everyone buys some kind of snack the make so you know they were making a killin

Traveler - 11/16/2012 9:00 AM
0 Votes
so where's the government bailout?
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