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View Diary: Hostess Brands Goes Bankrupt (Again), Stiffs Workers For a Billion (125 comments)

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  •  Wow..... (21+ / 0-)

    What an interesting perspective on this story.

    Thank you, DerAmi

    This better be good. Because it is not going away.

    by DerAmi on Wed Jan 11, 2012 at 11:22:03 AM PST

    •  Nothing But Management By Idiots (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      That story makes me ill.  Am I the only one who sees the inherent flaw at the structural core of capitalism in this scenario?  Or am I being a simplistic dolt?

      How much can anyone expect to earn baking and selling bread?  Bread is bread, it's been made the same way for thousands of years, everyone in the country can only eat so much bread, therefore, once equilibrium is reached between production and consumption, there is nowhere else to go.  What possible groundbreaking new technology or productivity improvement can possibly be implemented in the bread baking and distribution process?  But what does capitalism require?  Perpetually more.

      When someone comes in and buys and or consolidates a business, a business that has been nurtured over the course of decades, buying and paying off assets, some of which improve productivity, don't they immediately require more income to offset the cost of buying and consolidating that business?  I know if I buy a new $40,000 truck for a contacting business, I need to know there will be enough new income to pay for it.  But again, how much bread can the average person eat?  The same amount as he ate the day before the business sold as he can eat the day after the business sold so in come the hatchet men to kill off the workers to make up the difference.

      •  Over the past few hundred years, baking bread (0+ / 0-)

        commercially in quantity has changed dramatically. Recalling that the only mandate for a corporation is to profit its shareholders makes it easier to understand why bread today is so different.

        For years, baking companies have added to the bottom line by altering ingredients to decrease costs and maintain shelf life. Now that production costs have been minimized, labor costs are being cut to maintain profit margins.

        Of course this is a temporary measure as companies across America are finding out. Many companies like Hostess, which is owned by the Campbell Soup company, are still able to increase profit margins by cutting staff and doing tricks like bankruptcy.

        But after doing this, it becomes more difficult to retain labor and maintain production quality. The Hostess brand will suffer from these practices, and I hope the Twinkie will be banned from lunchboxes across America in response to the misdeeds of Hostess corporate executives.

        If you look at the list of ingredients on many commercially baked breads, it is pretty staggering, what with dough conditioners, stabilizers, cellulose for fiber and filler, and preservatives. Now that the public is more aware of ingredients, even Wonder Bread has had to change its ingredients.

        New recipe! Same great taste, but now free of artificial preservatives, artificial colours & artificial flavours.

        But many companies, including grocery store in-house bakeries, still use artificial preservatives, colors and flavors. Hopefully, bad corporate business practices will help more consumers consider not purchasing Hostess products. That would be both a health benefit for consumers and an economic disincentive to Hostess.

        FYI on the ingredients in Twinkies, which is referred to as more of a product than a food.

        The Twinkie, which was created during the Depression, contains thirty-nine ingredients. One of those ingredients is a preservative, sorbic acid. Sorbic acid is an ingredient I see on many packages, and I have never thought twice about it. But author Steve Ettlinger did. He found that sorbic acid is actually derived from natural gas.

        If that isn’t shocking enough, he goes on to talk about other ingredients like cellulose gum, Polysorbate 60, and calcium sulfate. Apparently, these ingredients are also used in sheet rock, shampoo, and rocket fuel. No wonder Twinkies make kids run around like crazy and have even been used as a defense for murder!

        Mr Ettlinger also found that the vitamins, artificial colors, and flavorings in Twinkies come from petroleum.

        I started to wonder how this tasty treat made from gas and rocks can be so light and airy. In comes Mr. Ettlinger again. Apparently, it’s limestone that makes Twinkies light. And that tasty cream center—it’s got to be milk, right? No. It’s made of shortening; there is absolutely no cream in the cream.

        If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. ~ George Washington

        by 4Freedom on Thu Jan 12, 2012 at 09:09:55 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Factually somewhat lacking... (0+ / 0-)

          1.   Hostess has never been owned by Campbell Soup, although rumor has it that Campbell had considered buying Hostess.

          2.   Hostess bakes a lot more than just Wonder white bread and Twinkies- Ever tasted Merita, Eddy's, Sweetheart, Braun's, Bost, Home Pride, Holsum, or the entire lines of Hostess and Dolly Madison cakes, donuts, and rolls? Or Canadian or Mexican produced Wonder bread that is made by other bakeries under license?

          3.   Yes, reading the ingredient list can make you queesy. But whatever big baker's bread or cake you buy will probably have the same ingredients.

          •  Believe ownership was cited in one of the linked (0+ / 0-)

            sources. If you know otherwise, I stand corrected.

            I'm not the customer for Hostess products under any branding. My health issues and concerns preclude that.

            If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter. ~ George Washington

            by 4Freedom on Thu Jan 12, 2012 at 11:34:24 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

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