Friday, November 16, 2012
HOSTESS BRANDS: GOING, GOING, GONE....
Hostess brands have been around since 1930, but now, after a strike and major losses, the
company is liquidated quicker than Mike Brown's season with the Los Angeles Lakers.
(5 Games). It's not exactly the Baltimore Colts leaving for Indianapolis under the cover, but
the closing of Hostess is a shocker and something that has been lighting up Twitter and
The Hostess brand shared the same company with Campbell's, Hellman's, and Pepperidge
Farms as a powerhouse like the New York Yankees, Montreal Canadians, and Green Bay
Packers. Nobody thought it could ever defeated. This was the company that fattened kids
up around the country with Ding Dongs, HoHo's, Sno Balls and, of course, Twinkies. They
became a staple of every brown bag lunch for elementary school kids and targets of parents
who got the late night munchies.
As kids, we would eat these sinful, sugar-filled treats with lunch, after dinner, and on the
way to sporting events. Nobody cared or knew much about nutrition during the 1970's,
when my generation tore open the beautifully colored and packaged products for the first
time. They created such a sugar high it's no wonder we were always bouncing off the walls
and making the lives of our parents so much tougher.
My Dad was a stickler for nutrition even back then. He had us drinking Tiger's Milk, gulping
down wheat germ, and cooking up egg whites. That was all ruined by my Mother, whom Hostess
should've have made an honorary member of their work force. Charlene would pack the
best brown bag lunches that were filled with Ding Dongs and HoHo's. She didn't care much
for the Twinkies and SnoBall's, and neither did we.
All these products were ushered in at a time when the FDA didn't require food labels.But when
they did, it astonished us all. Everything with the name Hostess on it was pure sugar. No
wonder this country's always had a problem with obesity. But nobody really cared because the
Hostess products were that good.
Some of the products like Little Debbie's had great slogan's that I often used when I encountered
someone named Debbie. Remember, "Little Debbie, not just for breakfast anymore."? In my first
job in television in Erie, Pa. I used to walk by the desk of a reporter named Debbie. And I used
to bark out that slogan. If it happened today, I'd probably be sent down to HR and eventually packing.
But back then, it seemed OK to use, I guess.
Breaking down the Hostess products is downright frightening:
2 Ring Dings have 340 calories with 30 grams of sugar. 30 grams!
1 Twinkie contains 150 calories with 18 grams of sugar. Thought for sure it'd be more.
1 SnoBall spits out 200 calories with a whopping 32 grams of sugar.
3 HoHo's equal 370 calories and 42 grams of sugar.
That's not exactly the type of fuel that gets you through the day. Can you say
diabetes, obesity, or hyperactive behavior? Those foods are insane. Maybe it's a good
thing Hostess is going out of business. The obesity rate in this country might go down 10
percent because of it.