Hostess To Liquidate Assets Into Sugary, Cream-Centered Cash

Unable to reach a deal with a labor union representing around one-third of its employees, management of Hostess Brands — the Twinkie and Wonder Bread people — have asked a bankruptcy court to allow it to close up shop and liquidate all of its assets.

The move comes in the midst of a week-long strike by several thousand members of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers Union. Hostess closed the doors at three plants earlier this week. The liquidation move will permanently stop the production lines at all 36 of the company’s plants. The liquidation will result in 18,500 employees losing their jobs.

The company — or what’s left of it — says it will continue delivering the items that have already been baked.

Reads a statement from management:

Hostess Brands is unprofitable under its current cost structure, much of which is determined by union wages and pension costs. The offer to the BCTGM included wage, benefit and work rule concessions but also gave Hostess Brands’ 12 unions a 25 percent ownership stake in the company, representation on its Board of Directors and $100 million in reorganized Hostess Brands’ debt.

It’s unlikely that Hostess’ most popular items — including Twinkies, Dolly Madison, Wonder Bread, Ding Dong, Ho Ho’s, and its signature Hostess CupCakes — will disappear forever, as the company plans to sell off these brands to the highest bidders. Hopefully the new owners will also acquire the closed plants and put the out-of-work employees back to work.

The heads of the striking BCTGM workers have claimed that the union is being made the scapegoat for a company that has been mismanaged since being sold as it emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2011.

“[T]he truth is that Hostess workers and their Union have absolutely no responsibility for the failure of this company,” the union said in a statement released yesterday before the request to liquidate was made. “That responsibility rests squarely on the shoulders of the company’s decision makers.”

Again, for those who will get twitchy without Twinkies while the product — at least temporarily — vanishes from shelves, here are some DIY recipes:
Chow.com

The NY Times

The Today Show

If you think you have a better or more interesting DIY Twinkie recipe, send it to us at tips@consumerist.com with the subject “TWINKIE RECIPE.” We’re going to see if we can successfully create something that resembles the sugary treat.

UPDATE: Consumerist reader Reb reminds us that Walmart already sells a Twinkie clone –