No final decision made about Mondelez closing

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.”

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