Hostess CEO: Buyers lining up for our brand

posted at 12:01 pm on November 19, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

The rush to stockpile Twinkies and Ho-Hos the past week may have been premature, according to ABC News.  Hostess will appear in bankruptcy court today to settle the sale of assets in their liquidation, brought on by a failure to reach a settlement with the bakers’ union.  However, Hostess CEO Gregory Rayburn says that they have already received offers to buy the brands — including a very promising offer from a Mexican group that may have a better economic model than can be found in the US:

“I think we’ll find buyers,”  CEO Gregory F. Rayburn told ABC News on Sunday.  ”A few have surfaced already since Friday expressing interest in the brand to acquire them.”

Con Agra and Flowers Foods are among the companies that have expressed interest in Hostess, but Mexican company El Grupo Bimbo may have an edge, the Christian Science Monitor reported Saturday.  Grupo Bimbo, headed by Mexican billionaire Daniel Servitje Montull, is the largest bread-baking company in the world.

Economists say part of the reason Hostess struggled was due to high sugar tariffs meant to protect local producers, the Monitor reported.  Grupo Bimbo could take advantage of lower sugar prices in Mexico.

First, this development has no small amount of irony.  The labor movement has attacked Republicans for many long years for off-shoring jobs in the name of free trade. Thanks to the bakers’ union, we may end up with almost 19,000 jobs heading south of the border, in the factories of Grupo Bimbo.  The protectionist sugar tariffs that both parties have extended and championed may end up having their own ironic role in these job losses, too.

Meanwhile, the head of the bakers’ union continues to dream big:

Frank Hurt, president of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers Union told the Wall Street Journal that there’s “more than a good chance” someone would swoop in to buy the company’s 30 brands and preserve jobs. He said that Twinkies and Wonder Bread are popular and they will be “produced somewhere, some time and by our members.”

Don’t bet on it.  If they’re produced anywhere in the US, expect those jobs to end up in right-to-work states.  Future buyers got a pretty good look at the irrational leadership of this union — which even the Teamsters tossed under the bus — and they’ll know better than to put the new company in the same position as the old company.

For the moment, we don’t know whether we’ll ever see a Twinkie come off the production line again, but I doubt the situation will be quite as dire as this (warning: not safe for work – language):

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It’s Sun Capital not Groupo Bimbo

Oil Can on November 19, 2012 at 1:30 PM

I’m pretty sure I saw Mexican Twinkies open up for ZZ Top in Austin back in ’78.

CitizenEgg on November 19, 2012 at 1:32 PM

IndieDogg on November 19, 2012 at 1:02 PM

Yep… and it also sounds like the baker’s union LIED to the people they were supposed to represent by telling them there were better options when the bankruptcy judge explicitly told them these cuts were the only option left.

dominigan on November 19, 2012 at 1:32 PM

The 12,000 Teamsters agreed to the management deal. It is the 6,000 Bakers/Confectioneers union that rejected the deal and prompted the pending liquidation of the company.

Bimbo USA has manufacturing operations in (guess where) the Twinkies, Ho Hos etc would still be made in the USA.

We need to get rid of the sugar quotas and the ethanol subsidies, both of which benefit large corporations and cost the US consumer a lot of money.

Old Fritz on November 19, 2012 at 1:34 PM

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 12:19 PM

You need to pay attention to what specifically happened with the baker’s union. Not only did they LIE to the people they pretended to represent, they forced an verbal (peer-pressure) vote, and then refused to work with management.

You’re just trying to redirect the discussion to save face. It won’t work. Even the Teamster’s union has stated that the baker’s union killed this. And yes, I give the Teamster’s union props… if only for recognizing how screwed up and destructive the baker’s union is!

dominigan on November 19, 2012 at 1:37 PM

But I should also point out that I will only give the Teamsters a minor prop… because they fought management and the bankruptcy judge for months until they finally decided to agree to the terms. The baker’s union probably wouldn’t have even tried this if the Teamster’s hadn’t made such a big show of resisting!

dominigan on November 19, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Bimbo Bakeries seems like a Gus Fringe enterprise to me….

fatlibertarianinokc on November 19, 2012 at 1:40 PM

Well, it does make for good “knee-jerk” hit generator… And I don’t like being played, Ed. M240H on November 19, 2012 at 12:19 PM

You do realize that you’re free to leave, right?

You’ve been played like Jack Benny’s violin.

turfmann on November 19, 2012 at 1:11 PM

You do realize you’re taking sides in a fight between two dumbass groups, right? This isn’t the NLRB telling Boeing they can’t build in SC; it’s the Barney Fife army aginst Mr. Drysdale. And the tactic of using bankruptcy court as a lever against the union, as they did in the past, should bother you as a taxpayer.

But hey, you’re free to be another dumbass in the fight, and Hot Air can reap the revenue off a non-issue that makes Conservatism look as good as it does in the immigration issue right now.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 1:48 PM

You do realize you’re taking sides in a fight between two dumbass groups, right? This isn’t the NLRB telling Boeing they can’t build in SC; it’s the Barney Fife army aginst Mr. Drysdale. And the tactic of using bankruptcy court as a lever against the union, as they did in the past, should bother you as a taxpayer.

But hey, you’re free to be another dumbass in the fight, and Hot Air can reap the revenue off a non-issue that makes Conservatism look as good as it does in the immigration issue right now.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 1:48 PM

They’ve been through bankruptcy court twice now in fight to save themselves. If you can read, the Teamsters agreed it was euitable. Yet the 5,000 member of the Bakery union decided to screw the other 12,000 non-union members who I’m sure right before Christmas would enjoy working.

“Barney Fife”, “Mr. Drysdale”……. you’re a walking cliche’.

itsspideyman on November 19, 2012 at 1:55 PM

The workers turned down a 8% pay cut, so they got a 100% paycut.

portlandon on November 19, 2012 at 12:56 PM

This way, though, they get unemployment benefits while they look for a new job. If they quit, no unemployment benefits.

Look, I think unions are outdated. But one of the reasons the GOP has difficulty winning over blue-collar voters is the “paycuts for all” mentality that good pay for workers is a bad thing.

AngusMc on November 19, 2012 at 1:56 PM

It’s a damn shame that all those good low skilled manufacturing jobs are gone.

tom daschle concerned on November 19, 2012 at 1:57 PM

Entenmann’s is owned by Grupo Bimbo. Await MoveOn dot org petitions about bakery monopolies. Big Bakery! Robber Barons! Shriek!

Buy Danish on November 19, 2012 at 1:59 PM

We are in the middle of a Twinkie-Crisis and it’s not funny.

Axion on November 19, 2012 at 2:02 PM

I’m pretty sure I saw Mexican Twinkies open up for ZZ Top in Austin back in ’78.

CitizenEgg on November 19, 2012 at 1:32 PM

No, that’s different.

Axion on November 19, 2012 at 2:03 PM

For a summary of the company killing rules these thugs imposed, see here:http://sweetness-light.com/archive/absurd-union-benefits-and-rules-killed-hostess?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sweetness-light%2FsURR+%28Sweetness+%26+Light+-+Articles%29

Hostess’s 372 collective-bargaining agreements required the company to maintain 80 different health and benefit plans, 40 pension plans and mandated a $31 million increase in wages and health care and other benefits for 2012.

Union work rules usually required cake and bread products to be delivered to a single retail location using two separate trucks. Drivers weren’t allowed to load their own vehicles, and the workers who loaded bread weren’t allowed to load cake. On most delivery routes, another “pull up” employee moved products from back rooms to shelves.

pat on November 19, 2012 at 1:02 PM

This is what the driveby voters don’t see. This was not about a dollar or two in the official wages. The insane work rules that exist only to increase the number of workers that Hostess needs to employ cost them far more than a small wage increase would. Not being able to fire lazy workers poisons productivity in the entire operation.

So it was with GM, and every other business in the process of being ruined by greedy unions.

slickwillie2001 on November 19, 2012 at 2:09 PM

I wish more people would talk about these asinine sugar tariffs. Its why we’re stuck with all these artificial sweeteners instead of all natural sugar.

Iblis on November 19, 2012 at 2:09 PM

Better get used to 18,000 job layoffs. They will become a daily occurrence in Obama’s second term-especially when the tax hikes and Obamacare kick in. The iceberg is directly in front of the ship and the captain has ordered the crew to double the speed.

Bimbo Twinkie. I love that. Sounds like something for Bill Clinton or Petraeus.

MaiDee on November 19, 2012 at 2:12 PM

From the USA Today story, Nov. 16, on this topic:

Management missteps were another problem. Hostess came under fire this spring after it was revealed that nearly a dozen executives received pay hikes of up to 80 percent last year even as the company was struggling.

Might be enough blame to go around. And a move like that might make a union dig in its’ heels. And it might also be that share-holding execs knew this day was coming no matter what so they pulled out all the cash they could.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Bimbo Twinkie. I love that. Sounds like something for Bill Clinton or Petraeus.

MaiDee on November 19, 2012 at 2:12 PM

They should make a new product and call it an Eruption.
Get your Bimbo Eruptions here!

22044 on November 19, 2012 at 2:21 PM

I wish more people would talk about these asinine sugar tariffs. Its why we’re stuck with all these artificial sweeteners instead of all natural sugar.

Iblis on November 19, 2012 at 2:09 PM

I get the mountain dew with real sugar… it is a HUGE difference in taste.

astonerii on November 19, 2012 at 2:29 PM

From the Wall Street Journal, Nov. 16, on this topic:

The company’s burdensome debt traces back to Hostess’s first trip through bankruptcy in 2004. Missteps by a private-equity firm, hedge funds and managers since burdened the company, despite its more than $2 billion in annual sales.

“I think there’s blame to go around everywhere,” said Chief Executive Gregory Rayburn, a turnaround expert hired this year.

The corpse of Hostess was a picked clean carcass by the time this union tried to bite just hard enough to keep their pay. I’m not keen to defend a union, but I think they’re being scapegoated here.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 2:32 PM

Wonder Bread is toast.

seven on November 19, 2012 at 2:35 PM

From the Wall Street Journal, Nov. 16, on this topic:

The company’s burdensome debt traces back to Hostess’s first trip through bankruptcy in 2004. Missteps by a private-equity firm, hedge funds and managers since burdened the company, despite its more than $2 billion in annual sales.

“I think there’s blame to go around everywhere,” said Chief Executive Gregory Rayburn, a turnaround expert hired this year.

The corpse of Hostess was a picked clean carcass by the time this union tried to bite just hard enough to keep their pay. I’m not keen to defend a union, but I think they’re being scapegoated here.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 2:32 PM

The bottom line is the bottom line. They are at the point where the choice was, pay cuts or the axe. The Union chose the AXE.

astonerii on November 19, 2012 at 2:35 PM

Please, oh please, oh please let these job stay in the US, but in non-union shops in a right-to- work state. That would be the best outcome possible.

KS Rex on November 19, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Mexico can also afford to make Coke with real sugar. So it sells at Costco and specialty stores. Meanwhile back at the local grocery store… the inferior Coke products are made with corn syrup.

petunia on November 19, 2012 at 2:40 PM

Future buyers got a pretty good look at the irrational leadership of this union

Huh.

Last time you wrote about this issue….you were wondering if Management was the bad guy.

Guess you finally did a little digging.

Good for you champ.

Tim_CA on November 19, 2012 at 2:46 PM

The bottom line is the bottom line. They are at the point where the choice was, pay cuts or the axe. The Union chose the AXE.

astonerii on November 19, 2012 at 2:35 PM

The inevitable was the bottom line, which why the execs took an 80% pay hike last year. They knew the business model could not survive. The demand for cuts was always going to be for more than what would be accepted.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 2:47 PM

This way, though, they get unemployment benefits while they look for a new job. If they quit, no unemployment benefits.

Look, I think unions are outdated. But one of the reasons the GOP has difficulty winning over blue-collar voters is the “paycuts for all” mentality that good pay for workers is a bad thing.

AngusMc on November 19, 2012 at 1:56 PM

I would imagine their unemployment benefits vary between the states that the various bakeries were in.

Not certain that all of them will see unemployment benefits, due to the way it all went down.

Nathan_OH on November 19, 2012 at 2:52 PM

Big Ding Dong

faraway on November 19, 2012 at 2:53 PM

Mexico can also afford to make Coke with real sugar. So it sells at Costco and specialty stores. Meanwhile back at the local grocery store… the inferior Coke products are made with corn syrup.

petunia on November 19, 2012 at 2:40 PM

Walmart too. Interesting that this was blamed on the sugar industry in Florida, but by far the most common sweetener in America is high fructose corn syrup. Another effect of political corruption in America due to Iowa?

slickwillie2001 on November 19, 2012 at 2:55 PM

The other ironic aspect of this development is that thousands of jobs going to Mexico means thousands less illegal immigrants coming into the USA.

Cheetah1956 on November 19, 2012 at 1:02 PM

(1) More jobs for Mexicans in Mexico means less illegal Mexican immigrants.

(2) Less fat white union democrats with jobs to funnel money into the unions, means less money to the democratic party.

You know this outsourcing jobs to Mexico may not be such a bad thing…

William Eaton on November 19, 2012 at 2:56 PM

Twinkie Mules crossing the border illegally suddenly sound okay.

portlandon on November 19, 2012 at 12:16 PM

Oddly, those particular Twinkies will be far more addictive than those that are shipped via the conventional truck route. ;)

Hill60 on November 19, 2012 at 2:56 PM

Slightly OT…but this is funny!

I just got an email from the church I attend sometimes, announcing that tonight is “Little Debbie Monday” – meaning that they’ll give out Little Debbie snacks to the attendees after the service.

I’m guessing that they had no idea that Twinkies and Ho Hos wouldn’t be available.

I’m also guessing that they won’t have “Bimbo Monday”…

22044 on November 19, 2012 at 3:02 PM

From what I’ve seen, the company’s management was pretty incompetent and rapacious as well. The union apparently had been giving concessions for years, and the management kept voting themselves raises. Nobody was covered in glory here.

skydaddy on November 19, 2012 at 3:03 PM

The corpse of Hostess was a picked clean carcass by the time this union tried to bite just hard enough to keep their pay. I’m not keen to defend a union, but I think they’re being scapegoated here.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 2:32 PM

As the wife of someone who has just been laid off from Hostess, it sure does seem to YOU that the union is being scapegoated. Let me tell you my family’s side…

Was Hostess mismanaged? Absolutely. However, the Bakers Union did not want to negotiate. Infact, when it came time to vote for the wage concessions do you know how much notice the union gave us? 24 hours. They told the media that they had notified their members a month in advance. We got the notice 24 hours beforehand.

The Teamsters Union agreed to the wage concessions. The Bakers’ Union did not. The Bakers’ Union was absolutely positive that Hostess was bluffing and there was a buyer in the works. There was not. The Teamsters had access to financial info that the Bakers Union did not, because the Teamsters were set to become part shareholder in the Bankruptcy proceedings. The Bankruptcy Judge told the Bakers Union there was not a buyer in the works.

Also, let me point out this fun fact to you about life in the Bakers Union. The guy that had seniority cost Hostess at least $3,000 every night in wasted dough because he was lazy and didn’t pay attention to his job. He had poor productivity and didn’t care about his job. But he had seniority. So my husband who had 95% – 100% weekly productivity numbers got shit hours, some weeks lucky to get 20 hours because the other guy had seniority. But the union protected the asshole that COST Hostess money EVERY NIGHT! My husband had to remake doughs that the dayshift guy messed up. But they wouldn’t punish the other guy because the union. The company had no recourse.

And it’s ALL Hostess’ fault?

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 3:06 PM

The corpse of Hostess was a picked clean carcass by the time this union tried to bite just hard enough to keep their pay. I’m not keen to defend a union, but I think they’re being scapegoated here.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 2:32 PM

As the wife of a recently laid off Hostess employee, let you give MY take on this…

Was Hostess mismanaged? Absolutely. However, the Bakers Union did not want to negotiate. Infact, when it came time to vote for the wage concessions do you know how much notice the union gave us? 24 hours. They told the media that they had notified their members a month in advance. We got the notice 24 hours beforehand.

The Teamsters Union agreed to the wage concessions. The Bakers’ Union did not. The Bakers’ Union was absolutely positive that Hostess was bluffing and there was a buyer in the works. There was not. The Teamsters had access to financial info that the Bakers Union did not, because the Teamsters were set to become part shareholder in the Bankruptcy proceedings. The Bankruptcy Judge told the Bakers Union there was not a buyer in the works.

Also, let me point out this fun fact to you about life in the Bakers Union. The guy that had seniority cost Hostess at least $3,000 every night in wasted dough because he was lazy and didn’t pay attention to his job. He had poor productivity and didn’t care about his job. But he had seniority. So my husband who had 95% – 100% weekly productivity numbers got shit hours, some weeks lucky to get 20 hours because the other guy had seniority. But the union protected the asshole that COST Hostess money EVERY NIGHT! My husband had to remake doughs that the dayshift guy messed up. But they wouldn’t punish the other guy because the union. The company had no recourse.

And again, it’s ALL Hostess’ fault? Bullshit.

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 3:11 PM

I think the bakers union members were just tired of working…..

They see all their liberal friends taking it easy on the taxpayer dime…..

They just want their fair share of your money.

redguy on November 19, 2012 at 3:13 PM

Bimbo Bakeries seems like a Gus Fringe enterprise to me….

fatlibertarianinokc on November 19, 2012 at 1:40 PM

I understand Los Pollos Hermanos made some damn tasty chicken…

JohnGalt23 on November 19, 2012 at 3:16 PM

This is what the driveby voters don’t see. This was not about a dollar or two in the official wages. The insane work rules that exist only to increase the number of workers that Hostess needs to employ cost them far more than a small wage increase would. Not being able to fire lazy workers poisons productivity in the entire operation.

slickwillie2001 on November 19, 2012 at 2:09 PM

This is what most normal people hate about many unions.

juliesa on November 19, 2012 at 3:32 PM

BREAKING: Hostess and Bakers Union agree to mediation, preventing shut down.

Don’t know how much this will help. Union work rules are a real problem. Bread and cakes can not be on same truck. Really how is that defensible? The Union is a lot to blame. But high management salaries going up in bankruptcy are also to blame.

Steveangell on November 19, 2012 at 3:37 PM

Stand by —- expect the Bakers Union to cave big time

jake-the-goose on November 19, 2012 at 3:37 PM

One thing I think is interesting is that in all this discussion and reporting, no one has actually mentioned just how much compensation the various union workers were getting! It’s only reported as “turned down 7% cut in wages. . . ” and such.

So — just how much were the people who made Twinkies and Ding-Dongs getting paid? How much as their total compensation package, once you include health benefits and retirement?

Does anyone know?

Narniaman on November 19, 2012 at 3:38 PM

US bankruptcy judge says Hostess case is adjourned until 11 a.m. Wednesday to make room for Tuesday’s mediation – @Reuters
Guess we will know soon at least. The local thrift store was closed today all trucks gone as well.

Steveangell on November 19, 2012 at 3:43 PM

Yep… and it also sounds like the baker’s union LIED to the people they were supposed to represent by telling them there were better options when the bankruptcy judge explicitly told them these cuts were the only option left.

dominigan on November 19, 2012 at 1:32 PM

The union lied to protect contracts at other plants. If the union had accepted the concessions and lower hourly wages, it would have set a precedent for other bakery co management to negotiate the union lower across the industry.
So yes, the union flat out lied to its members.

Yet Hostess was ultimately doomed by past management and investor decisions that saddled it with unbearable levels of debt. Often the only way to relieve a brand of that type of debt is to shut down and liquidate. The investors responsible for its dire financial condition will hopefully pay a big price for their repeated incompetence.

bayam on November 19, 2012 at 3:43 PM

I was told to bring dessert for Thanksgiving and I thought it would be fun to take Twinkies (and something else) but gosh darnit, NOBODY has any in this godforsaken town! :)

scalleywag on November 19, 2012 at 3:45 PM

Frank Hurt, president of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers Union told the Wall Street Journal that there’s “more than a good chance” someone would swoop in to buy the company’s 30 brands and preserve jobs. He said that Twinkies and Wonder Bread are popular and they will be “produced somewhere, some time and by our members.”

trigon on November 19, 2012 at 3:46 PM

They’ll buy the Twinkie brand and the recipe, but they won’t buy the union contracts.

Same thing would have happened if Government Motors was allowed to go through a normal bankruptcy process, the one same one millions of corporations have gone through over centuries, including the one that founded Jamestown. That is, instead of the newly formulated socialist bankruptcy process Comrade Chairman Obama imposed by dictatorial edict.

farsighted on November 19, 2012 at 3:47 PM

I understand Los Pollos Hermanos made some damn tasty chicken…

JohnGalt23 on November 19, 2012 at 3:16 PM

I want some.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FIQ2F3T1ydM

fatlibertarianinokc on November 19, 2012 at 3:48 PM

Unions in many ways are like lenders. While employees work and get compensation, there can come a time when unions/employees and lenders say “no more money/concessions/etc”. Lenders know that the company may then go under. Unions, if they think about it, also know that the company may go under though they may not initially or truly believe it.

In this case, the Teamsters decided that, however painful the concessions were, having the jobs was more important. The other union decided perhaps that the company was bluffing, that it wasn’t necessary, so they chose a different course of action.

Miscalculation or disbelieving someone else’s position has caused a lot of grief over time. Sometimes it does not matter because things were not as dire as expressed but sometimes for some it really is a case of saying do your worst and finding the other side really wasn’t bluffing.

Russ808 on November 19, 2012 at 3:48 PM

(AP) — Twinkies won’t die that easily after all. Hostess Brands Inc. and its second largest union will go into mediation to try and resolve their differences, meaning the Irving, Texas-based company won’t go out of business just yet. The news came Monday after Hostess moved to liquidate and sell off its assets in bankruptcy court citing a crippling strike last week.

The bankruptcy judge hearing the case says that the parties haven’t gone through the critical step of mediation and asked the lawyer for the bakery’s union to ask his client, who wasn’t present, if he would agree to participate.

The case is being heard by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Southern District of New York in White Plains, N.Y.

elco on November 19, 2012 at 3:49 PM

elco on November 19, 2012 at 3:49 PM

What’s the judge going to do if the owners refuse to continue operating at a loss. Put them in jail for not agreeing to keep losing money?

Comrade Lenin would be proud. Next stop for the owners, the Gulag.

farsighted on November 19, 2012 at 3:53 PM

What’s the judge going to do if the owners refuse to continue operating at a loss. Put them in jail for not agreeing to keep losing money?

Comrade Lenin would be proud. Next stop for the owners, the Gulag.

farsighted on November 19, 2012 at 3:53 PM

This is just the legal system doing it’s thing. The judge is trying to do the best for the creditors but also the best to follow the law. Mediation makes sense. The bakers union lied to it’s members and denied them a secret ballot.

Steveangell on November 19, 2012 at 3:58 PM

Off topic.

Anybody else getting script errors? It appears that the linkage to ABC resulted in my getting a script error (access is denied) for cdnapi.kaltura.com. Finally put cdnapi.kaltura.com on the no go list and I can’t see the ABC linked vid but I don’t get the error message anymore.

I hope it doesn’t mess up anything else.

Russ808 on November 19, 2012 at 3:58 PM

The corpse of Hostess was a picked clean carcass by the time this union tried to bite just hard enough to keep their pay. I’m not keen to defend a union, but I think they’re being scapegoated here.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 2:32 PM

As the wife of someone who has just been laid off from Hostess, it sure does seem to YOU that the union is being scapegoated. Let me tell you my family’s side…

Was Hostess mismanaged? Absolutely. However, the Bakers Union did not want to negotiate. Infact, when it came time to vote for the wage concessions do you know how much notice the union gave us? 24 hours. They told the media that they had notified their members a month in advance. We got the notice 24 hours beforehand.

The Teamsters Union agreed to the wage concessions. The Bakers’ Union did not. The Bakers’ Union was absolutely positive that Hostess was bluffing and there was a buyer in the works. There was not. The Teamsters had access to financial info that the Bakers Union did not, because the Teamsters were set to become part shareholder in the Bankruptcy proceedings. The Bankruptcy Judge told the Bakers Union there was not a buyer in the works.

Also, let me point out this fun fact to you about life in the Bakers Union. The guy that had seniority cost Hostess at least $3,000 every night in wasted dough because he was lazy and didn’t pay attention to his job. He had poor productivity and didn’t care about his job. But he had seniority. So my husband who had 95% – 100% weekly productivity numbers got shit hours, some weeks lucky to get 20 hours because the other guy had seniority. But the union protected the asshole that COST Hostess money EVERY NIGHT! My husband had to remake doughs that the dayshift guy messed up. But they wouldn’t punish the other guy because the union. The company had no recourse.

And it’s ALL Hostess’ fault?

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 3:06 PM

Greedy union management often makes the claim of “bad management” by the employer when a company fails. If you dig deeper what you often find that what they mean by “bad management” is that the employer erred by agreeing to the company-bankrupting demands of the greedy union. They never take responsibility for those demands and the flawed contracts.

This was true in the Government Motors case.

slickwillie2001 on November 19, 2012 at 4:03 PM

How dare you decide to quite losing money and shut down your business. What do you think, that you own the company or something?
– Hostess Union Spokesmen

It really is a matter of ownership rights and personal private property rights. Hostess is not even publicly held.

But then, today’s modern enlightened democratic socialists have little respect or regard for property rights, except for their own. Neither did the classic socialists of a century ago. They have that, and much else, in common.

farsighted on November 19, 2012 at 4:03 PM

Obama saved Ho Hos????

faraway on November 19, 2012 at 4:04 PM

The corpse of Hostess was a picked clean carcass by the time this union tried to bite just hard enough to keep their pay. I’m not keen to defend a union, but I think they’re being scapegoated here.

M240H on November 19, 2012 at 2:32 PM

As the wife of someone who has just been laid off from Hostess, it sure does seem to YOU that the union is being scapegoated. Let me tell you my family’s side…

Was Hostess mismanaged? Absolutely. However, the Bakers Union did not want to negotiate. Infact, when it came time to vote for the wage concessions do you know how much notice the union gave us? 24 hours. They told the media that they had notified their members a month in advance. We got the notice 24 hours beforehand.

The Teamsters Union agreed to the wage concessions. The Bakers’ Union did not. The Bakers’ Union was absolutely positive that Hostess was bluffing and there was a buyer in the works. There was not. The Teamsters had access to financial info that the Bakers Union did not, because the Teamsters were set to become part shareholder in the Bankruptcy proceedings. The Bankruptcy Judge told the Bakers Union there was not a buyer in the works.

Also, let me point out this fun fact to you about life in the Bakers Union. The guy that had seniority cost Hostess at least $3,000 every night in wasted dough because he was lazy and didn’t pay attention to his job. He had poor productivity and didn’t care about his job. But he had seniority. So my husband who had 95% – 100% weekly productivity numbers got &&&& hours, some weeks lucky to get 20 hours because the other guy had seniority. But the union protected the ahole that COST Hostess money EVERY NIGHT! My husband had to remake doughs that the dayshift guy messed up. But they wouldn’t punish the other guy because the union. The company had no recourse.

And it’s ALL Hostess’ fault?

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 3:06 PM

Greedy union management often makes the claim of “bad management” by the employer when a company fails. If you dig deeper what you often find that what they mean by “bad management” is that the employer erred by agreeing to the company-bankrupting demands of the greedy union. They never take responsibility for those demands and the flawed contracts.

This was true in the Government Motors case.

slickwillie2001 on November 19, 2012 at 4:05 PM

Greedy union management often makes the claim of “bad management” by the employer when a company fails. If you dig deeper what you often find that what they mean by “bad management” is that the employer erred by agreeing to the company-bankrupting demands of the greedy union. They never take responsibility for those demands and the flawed contracts.

This was true in the Government Motors case.

slickwillie2001 on November 19, 2012 at 4:05 PM

Ever notice the common elements in these stories?

Unions. And union management claiming the problem is the company was mismanaged. But there are invariably unions involved.

Another common element in theses stories is successful profitable competitors whose work force is not unionized. Using union management’s own logic, they must be better managed.

farsighted on November 19, 2012 at 4:15 PM

I figure that 18,000 (union) jobs are gone, and if they stay in America, they will be relocated to “right to work” states and finished product just shipped…

Nice bluff, baker’s union… that’s a pretty big pay cut you negotiated…

Khun Joe on November 19, 2012 at 4:23 PM

Holy cow, I hope they can come to terms.

I know a lot of you guys are rooting for Hostess to go Galt to teach the big bad Unions a lesson and I want that too.

However, I’d like to keep my family off of government assistance more and if my husband can’t get his job back, he will be going on unemployment and trying to find a job in a city that has almost a 12% unemployment rate.

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

“no politician -from either side- will touch it?”

Who cares. Those Bimbos in Congress can just keep their noses out of it.

RADIOONE on November 19, 2012 at 5:31 PM

Holy cow, I hope they can come to terms.

I know a lot of you guys are rooting for Hostess to go Galt to teach the big bad Unions a lesson and I want that too.

However, I’d like to keep my family off of government assistance more and if my husband can’t get his job back, he will be going on unemployment and trying to find a job in a city that has almost a 12% unemployment rate.

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

While I relish the thought of anything that makes unions look bad (with my sincere sympathy if your husband was/is a bakers union member), I do not wish for anyone to lose their job. Not even the union members. I may not feel bad about it, and I may believe that the essence of conservatism is “life isn’t fair,” but it is most certainly not fair that for every union member unwilling to budge, there were two more who were willing to go back in and do their jobs.

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I really sincerely do hope that it works out for the best.

gryphon202 on November 19, 2012 at 5:45 PM

Why won’t the MSM talk about the Ho-Ho’s? I like them much more.

mid_aged_man on November 19, 2012 at 5:50 PM

Thank you gryphon.

I am a firm believer in “Life isn’t fair”. I tell my 6 year old that we are guaranteed equal opportunity not equal results. It is up to us to make of it what we will. That being said, the plant here in Vegas was not on strike nor was there ever a whisper of one. Signing up with the union was a requirement for employment. My husband had to do it within a certain time frame and he signed up on the very last day.

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 6:00 PM

…OH OH!…Twinkies is the only thread to go over a hundred comments today?

KOOLAID2 on November 19, 2012 at 6:19 PM

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Ok, now you are crying and hurt, but did you stand up and say no to unions when there was a vote? Did you try to remove the cancer or did you just go along with everything? I’m sorry, you can’t have it both ways. Good bye jobs, good bye unions. Como estas ustedes?

hip shot on November 19, 2012 at 6:31 PM

As a matter of fact, my husband DID vote FOR the wage concessions. We got exactly 24 hours notice and put a family hiking day on hold so he could go the 30 miles across town to go vote.

We aren’t trying to have it both ways. We want HIS job.

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 7:10 PM

Archie Bunker’s favorite pastry was Twinkies.

Akzed on November 19, 2012 at 7:39 PM

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Ok, now you are crying and hurt, but did you stand up and say no to unions when there was a vote? Did you try to remove the cancer or did you just go along with everything? I’m sorry, you can’t have it both ways. Good bye jobs, good bye unions. Como estas ustedes?

hip shot on November 19, 2012 at 6:31 PM

Not really fair hip shot, because him and many of the employees likely never had a vote EVER on whether to join the greedy-union or not. They get votes on greedy union ‘leadership’ and probably voice votes on whether to accept a deal or not. The decision to join the greedy-union may have been made a generation or two ago. Then that business is a closed-shop and if you want to work you join the greedy union.

In a right world, there would be a revote every five or ten years on whether to retain the greedy-union, and other greedy-unions would be able to poach companies if they convinced the workers that they could do a better job of representing them.

Once the greedy union is firmly entrenched, if you don’t support the greedy-union you find yourself first on the layoff list, or with zero overtime, or pushed into the worst shift. There’s not much companies can do then because that’s what Wagner and all the pro-greedy-union legislation pushed through since Wagner did. There is a hundred years of pro-greedy-union law on the books.

slickwillie2001 on November 19, 2012 at 8:47 PM

At this point in time it is simply best to let Hostess go the way of the proverbial old soldier and just fade away.

TQM38a on November 19, 2012 at 9:16 PM

Thank you gryphon.

I am a firm believer in “Life isn’t fair”. I tell my 6 year old that we are guaranteed equal opportunity not equal results. It is up to us to make of it what we will. That being said, the plant here in Vegas was not on strike nor was there ever a whisper of one. Signing up with the union was a requirement for employment. My husband had to do it within a certain time frame and he signed up on the very last day.

Chocktopus on November 19, 2012 at 6:00 PM

That is a big worry of mine. Not every union member is a union stooge, though a good number of them (like my uncle, who belongs to a union in a right-to-work state) are. The bad apples make the good ones look bad by association.

gryphon202 on November 19, 2012 at 9:21 PM

…OH OH!…Twinkies is the only thread to go over a hundred comments today?

KOOLAID2 on November 19, 2012 at 6:19 PM

We like Twinkies! :) Or at least like talking about them

22044 on November 19, 2012 at 10:27 PM

Somewhat off topic…

The US population began to get fatter about the time that sugar tariffs caused high-fructose corn syrup to be favored in food and beverages over sugar.

In the rest of the world, obesity rates aren’t accelerating nearly as quickly as in the US, and I think a dearth of corn syrup outside of the US is one of many factors.

The pro-HFCS crowd argues that it all digests the same as sugar, caloricaly-speaking, but I’m convinced that people eat more of HFCS-sweetened products because they just aren’t as satisfying as real sugar.

I also have a suspicion that HFCS is metabolized differently that sucrose, this study would seem to support that notion.

Mt. Dew and Coke made with sugar taste better, IMHO.

E-R

p.s. I’ve noticed that Aldi grocery stores here in the US seem to have many foods that are made with sugar instead of HFCS – and some of the labels mention that fact. Some share of those products come from plants outside of the USA.

electric-rascal on November 19, 2012 at 11:56 PM

Hostess is headquartered in Irving, TX. I wonder how it is they ended up with so many union workers. I bet they have an interesting, if convoluted corporate history.

stvnscott on November 20, 2012 at 10:53 AM

electric-rascal on November 19, 2012 at 11:56 PM

HFCS is 55% fructose / 45% glucose, whereas table sugar (sucrose) is 50% fructose / 50% glucose. Fructose is metabolized in the liver and tends to kick off related metabolic processes which result in more fat storage. Studies are beginning to show that extra 5% fructose can add to a person’s weight when consumed over long periods of time.

stvnscott on November 20, 2012 at 11:03 AM

Union members love cheap stuff at Walmat.
But they hate the global economy.

Too bad we don’t have a POTUS who can explain basic business economics to them.

VastRightWingConspirator on November 20, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Congratulations, greedy labor union bosses, your intransigence and refusal to face the facts has just cost the US an iconic company. I grew up eating Wonder Bread! Let’s hope the Mexicans can bake as well. Let’s see, it’s also cost 19,000 jobs, 19,000 more on unemployment; it’s a good thing we’re wealthy and can afford to dole out 19,000 more checks every month. I suppose those 19,000 will also need welfare, food stamps, free phones, free medical, free housing, etc, like the rest of the moochers. Yep…well done.

uncle_fweddy on November 20, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Surprise! Talks between Hostess and labor union stooges break down; liquidation resumes.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/20/hostess-bankruptcy-mediation_n_2168596.html?icid=maing-grid10%7Chtmlws-main-bb%7Cdl1%7Csec1_lnk2%26pLid%3D236870

Philly on November 20, 2012 at 8:40 PM

Wow, I have to get some new glasses… I looked at the above URL and thought the domain portion was FLuffingtonpost.com

He he.

E-R

electric-rascal on November 20, 2012 at 9:33 PM

Kayak + Short Wide PVC Pipe + Long Narrow PVC Pipe + Gas Grill Ignitor + Frozen Twinkies = Obama’s Green Navy

WeekendAtBernankes on November 23, 2012 at 8:32 PM

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