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Tulsa plant could reopen after Hostess sale

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Updated: 3/13/2013 9:20 am Published: 3/12/2013 8:47 pm

At the Hostess plant in east Tulsa it is a sad sight.

A gate blocks the entrance way and lines of hostess trucks sit parked inside the fences, but those trucks could be rolling again soon if a bid to sell the Tulsa plant along with 19 others across the country and five Hostess bread brands to Georgia based Flowers Foods goes through later this year.

Flowers Foods, based in Thomasville, Georgia, placed a bid of $360 million to buy five Hostess brands, including Wonder Bread. The bid, which also includes 20 bakeries and 38 warehouses, was not topped by any other company.

It must still be approved by a bankruptcy court judge on March 19th.

Once the bankruptcy court approves Flowers Foods’ purchase, the sale needs to get regulatory approval before bread can once again roll off the production lines in Tulsa and other cities.
FOX23 spoke with a Flowers Foods spokesperson who says the company does not have any idea how long the sale could take to be finalized. They said it could take weeks or months to complete, but all indications are the sale will be approved and the company will set up a bakery in Oklahoma.
Flowers Foods does not currently have any other bakeries in Oklahoma.
The Tulsa City Councilor for District Five where the bakery is located says this is news promising, and she thinks this plant can reopen.
“That's going to give us 100, 200 more jobs, so the people who lost their jobs at the beginning of the bankruptcy stage, hopefully they can recapture that and come back,” Karen Gilbert said.
Gilbert told FOX23 she has tried to stay on top of the developments as Hostess has gone through bankruptcy proceedings.
“I've been sending out emails, texting people, trying to figure out what's been going on, keep me up to date on this. We've got to get these jobs back, we've got to his building going, and revenue back in the city,” she said.
More than just jobs and tax dollars, Gilbert knows this plant brings a little something extra to the city.
“We can get that bread smell back in the air.”

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