As Hostess goes under, treat fans sad, developers glad

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SEATTLE —

With Hostess going out of business and closing its plants, the company will be selling off its property in Seattle's South Lake Union area as fans of the treats and others hoping to make a profit gobble up stock from store shelves.

 

The Seattle plant is on Dexter Avenue North and Republican Street, property that has developers’ mouths watering with anticipation.

 

South Lake Union is undergoing a massive re-development that has been years in the making.

 

There's been constant construction, and online giant Amazon moved to the area several years ago.

 

The Hostess bakery has been in the area for more than 70 years, but now the company that makes Wonder Bread, Twinkies and other iconic treats has announced it’s liquidating everything, including the Seattle building and land.

 

The icing on the cake for developers is a potential zone change that the Seattle City Council is considering  that would allow buildings up to 400 feet tall in South Lake Union.

 

If approved, a developer looking to build a high-rise would likely pay a premium price for the property.  Hostess, under bankruptcy guidelines, has to maximize the value of its holdings.

 

The City Council is expected to make a decision about the zoning early next year.

 

 The Irving, Texas, company said a nationwide worker strike crippled its ability to make and deliver its products at several locations.

 

Meanwhile, fans of the treats have been bracing for the end of the line and others are just looking to make money from the company's demise.

 

Joelle Hammerstad said she has been stocking up on Hostess products all week.

 

“I used to like the cherry pie, now I favor the Zingers.  I know the whole brand. It's sad,” said Hammerstad.

 

Hammerstad has been stopping by a Seattle 7-Eleven every morning this week to get her treats, and after news of the shutdown, she's not alone.

 

Many shoppers are grabbing some of the iconic cakes at stores, but not just for snacking, but to make a profit.

 

Boxes of Twinkies and Hostess products have already been posted on eBay.  Some sellers are asking as much as $100 a box,  but dozens of others are listing the products for a fraction of that price.

 

Public reaction to the news of Hostess closing may be premature.

 

Another company could buy Hostess or simply purchase the rights to the brand names of Ding Dongs, Twinkies and others.

 

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