State and city officials met with Mondelez International executives last week to discuss the possible closing of the company’s landmark Boulevard bakery, but the only news out of the session held Nov. 21 at the Bellevue in Center City is that there probably will be more meetings.
City Councilman Brian O’Neill (R-10 dist.) and state Sen. Mike Stack (D-5th dist.) both said they had agreed to keep the content of the talks confidential.
Public officials asked for a face-to-face with Mondelez reps earlier this month after the company told employees at its Boulevard and Byberry plant that it was considering closing it and investing $100 million in New Jersey and Virginia operations.
Besides Stack and O’Neill, representatives of the governor’s office, the City Commerce Department and other agencies met with company executives. State Rep. Brendan Boyle and Ed Neilson participated by phone from Harrisburg.
The plant, which opened in the mid-1950s as a Nabisco bakery, has almost 300 union employees, who make such familiar products as Oreos and Teddy Grahams. The bakery was owned by Kraft until late last year when Mondelez split off into a separate company.
Mondelez had worldwide income of $35 billion. It also makes Triscuits, Chips Ahoy cookies, Ritz crackers, Newtons, Tang, Trident gum and Cadbury chocolates. A company spokeswoman said Mondelez has made no final decisions yet on its Philadelphia operations.
The session at the Bellevue was the first opportunity for all the parties to meet, said Mondelez spokeswoman Laurie Guzzinati. “It was a good first step. We look forward to keeping the dialogue open.”