Archway & Mother's Cookie Co. abruptly closes

by Eric Schroeder
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BATTLE CREEK, MICH. — Archway & Mother’s Cookie Co. abruptly closed its headquarters in Battle Creek and baking facility in Ashland, Ohio, on Oct. 3. The move affected 160 workers at the two locations.

The status of Archway’s remaining facility — a manufacturing plant in Kitchener, Ont. — remains up in the air.

The closings appear to bring to a close several difficult years for Archway, which was founded in Battle Creek in 1936 and operated a bakery there until 1993. In 2006, the company closed its 183,000-square-foot Mother’s Cookies Oakland (Calif.) bakery and distribution center and sold its 65,000-square-foot facility in Plant City, Fla., to Toufayan Bakery Inc., a pita bread maker.

In October 2003, Italy-based Parmalat Finanziaria S.p.A., which acquired Archway from Specialty Foods Corp. in November 2000, shifted production of Archway Cookies to Ashland from Perry, N.Y., citing a need to increase productivity and efficiency. Less than two years later, in January 2005, Parmalat sold the Archway & Mother’s businesses to Catterton Partners of Greenwich, Conn., a private equity firm that invests in food, beverage and consumer goods companies. Catterton has not commented on the Archway closings.

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