As you may have already heard, Hostess Brands announced on November 16, 2012 that they are liquidating their assets and closing up shop. They will no longer be producing a long line of products including such iconic snack brands as Twinkies, Sno Balls, and Devil Dogs (under the Drake’s Cakes label).
Friday night I attempted to get my hands on just one more Twinkie.
Just one more….
Over a dozen stores and stops later, including places that I normally would not look to buy foodstuffs from, I ended up only with a couple packs of Sno Balls, a few Ding Dongs, and some much misaligned cupcakes. Prices on EBay and Amazon for a box of Twinkies has increased over one hundred fold.
I have, for all intense purposes, eaten my last Twinkie… and I didn’t even know it.
Here is the letter to the customer that appears at HostessBrands.info:
Letter to Hostess Brands Customers
Dear Loyal Customer,
I must regretfully inform you that Hostess Brands has shut down all operations and will be pursuing the sale process of all of our brands and Company assets. Many people have worked incredibly long and hard to keep this from happening, but now Hostess Brands has no other alternative than to begin the process of winding down and preparing for the sale of our iconic brands.
For many months now, the Company has been working with our unions, lenders and other stakeholders to reach a consensual resolution to legacy costs and labor contracts. Despite everyone’s considerable efforts, when we began implementing the Company’s last, best and final offer, the Bakers Union chose to stage a crippling strike. This affected our ability to continue to make products and service our customers’ needs and pushed Hostess Brands into a Wind Down scenario. As a result, the Company was forced to proceed with an orderly wind down and sale of our operations and assets. We deeply regret taking this action. But we simply cannot continue to operate without the ability to produce or deliver our products.
Hostess Brands will sell its popular cake snack brands, including Twinkies®, CupCakes®, Ding Dongs®, Ho Ho’s®, Sno Balls®, Donettes®, Drake’s® cakes and Dolly Madison®. Bread brands to be sold include Wonder®, Nature’s Pride®, Merita®, Home Pride®, Butternut®, and Millbrook®, among others.
This Wind Down announcement brings our current relationship to an end and I want to take this time to thank you for your continued support and loyalty throughout the past several years.
It has been a great pleasure working with you and I wish you all the best in the future. Attached is an information sheet to help address your concerns.
Executive Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer
Hostess Brands, Inc.
I think it’s important to take this letter somewhat for what it’s worth, but realize that there are always more sides to the story. While the management will lay blame on the laborers, and the laborers will lay blame on the management, it’s important that they all accept the fact that they are all to blame. This was an epic team failure which resulted in a smaller market share due to higher priced products compared to their competitors. This became obvious when every store I went into had a Hostess “shelf” or two as opposed to a floor to ceiling display like a few other brands.
You know the brands I mean… the “Little” one, the “Enten” of “Manns”, and of course those “Tasty” brands all had more prominent placement and displays than Hostess to begin with. This has sadly been a long time coming.
In a few weeks, Twinkies will be but a memory… and Twinkie the Kid will ride off as something of a lost legend…