Friday, January 7, 2011

Not So Sweet

I had a typical Philadelphia lunch today. Well, I guess I should say yesterday since by the time anyone other than me sees this...It will be Friday Morning. Yesterday, I went to Lee's Hoagie shop and had an Italian Hoagie with the works, Bottled water and a Tastycake. My hoagie was made on that good thick bread that is only made in the southeastern area of this state...And then there was my Tastycake.

If you're not from Philadelphia, you don't have any inkling of what I'm talking about. Tastycake is the logo used by the Tasty Baking Company. This company has been around longer than I have. If you were born and raised know about their pies and their cakes and their jelly krimpets and their coconut juniors...Sure you do...Every Philadelphian...regardless of race, religion, gender, gender preference or economic standing knows what a Tastycake was. Yesterday I got the shocking news that the company is in financial straits.

The Tasty Baking Company was founded in 1914 (See ,I told you it's been around way longer than I have.) and headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is one of the country’s leading bakers of snack cakes, pies, cookies, and donuts with manufacturing facilities in Philadelphia and Oxford, Pennsylvania. Tasty Baking Company offers more than 100 products under the Tastykake brand name. So what happened?

Charlie P. Pizzi, president and CEO of Tasty Baking Company, says they experienced a shaky fourth quarter last year.Mr. Pizzi blames financial problems on unexpected production difficulties at its new bakery facility in South Philadelphia’s Naval Business Center. He cited other factors such as the impact of the bankruptcy filing by A&P, and the sharp rise in commodity costs.

Tasty Baking Company is said to be discussing various alternatives to solve its problems with their financial lenders group led by Citizens Bank, the possibility of a potential merger, or the complete sale of the baking company. Tasty has also retained Janney Montgomery Scott to evaluate various possible financial and strategic options including refinancing long term debt due in September 2012.

During the process, the company will continue to operate its two modern bakeries and produce, distribute and sell Tastykake products to its customers and consumers. Pizzi concluded, “While this has been a challenging period for us operationally, we remain focused on growing the business. To that end we continue to partner with new grocery and convenience store customers within our core markets, increase penetration with key customers, and launch new products into the marketplace. Finally, despite the challenges we have faced, we have continued to outpace the category and grow our overall market share.” Economic talk for -"We are in trouble"

Philadelphia Mayor and personal friend of mine, Mike Nutter is optimistic about Tastycake's future...If you ask him , he'll tell you so. Mayor Nutter says he was fully briefed on the financial woes of Tastykake by Charles Pizzi, and Mayor Nutter is optimistic that the firm will get through this.

“I think they have certainly plans in place. They’re still selling products. There are no issues in terms of folks getting their Krimpets and Tastykakes,” said Mayor Nutter.

Mayor Nutter said Charles Pizzi did not raise the issue of the need for any sort of tax relief from the city, though their value to the city, he stressed, is huge. “Tastykake is an institution in Philadelphia. It is a part of the fabric of the city,” said Mayor Nutter.

Indeed it is. Just so you know....I did my part to help keep Tastycake solvent....I bought some Jelly Krimpets too...To eat later.


Sean said...

Say it aint so Keith..Not Tastycake! Good post!

James Perkins said...

This was a good post..I've enjoyed Tastycake for years..I sure hope they can work this out.

Brenda said...

I buy a Tastycake product of some kind everyday...This is sad news.

Lisa said...

I think this should have been in
"Good Foodie" LOL...Good post!

Toni said...

I'm with Sean-Say it aint so Keith!

Angie B. said...

First they close John Wanamakers, now this!

Arlene said...

I'm going to put my money where my mouth is and buy some Butterscotch Krimpets and Chocolate Cupcakes on my way home. I grew up with Tastykakes too and remember loving the cherry pie.

P.S. Cousin, Mike Nutter is your "personal friend??"


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