May 11, 2012 | last updated May 14, 2012 11:16 am

Hostess Warns Of Layoffs

Hostess Brands, the maker of Twinkies, Ding Dongs and Wonder Bread, has sent notification letters to officials of 10 Massachusetts communities saying it could lay off employees as a result of its restructuring under Chapter 11 bankruptcy laws. The Irving, Texas-based company filed for bankruptcy protection Jan. 11.

Of the 13 facilities that could be affected, those in Central Massachusetts are in West Boylston, Fitchburg which have one facility each, and Worcester, which has four.

Alison Harris, director of communications for the state's Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development said about 300 workers in the Bay State could be affected, although she couldn't say how many at each facility, specifically.

The letters were sent earlier this week under the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act and said facility closures could happen as soon as 60 days after receipt of the notice. Erik Halvorson, a spokesman for the company, said there are 18,500 Hostess employees. All received the same notification.

In an email statement, Halvorson said, "Our goal is still to emerge from bankruptcy as a growing company with a strong future, and there are no immediate actions being taken to lay off employees or close facilities. We are simply fulfilling our requirements by sending these notices."


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