Hostess Brands Inc. and its striking union have agreed to mediation talks to try and resolve their differences, meaning the Texas-based baker of Ho Hos, Twinkies and Wonder Bread won't be going out of business just yet.
The news came Monday after Hostess moved to liquidate and sell off its assets in bankruptcy court citing a crippling strike last week.
The bankruptcy judge hearing the case says that the parties haven't gone through the critical step of mediation and asked the lawyer for the bakery's union to ask his client, who wasn't present, if he would agree to participate.
Judge Robert Drain of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in White Plains, N.Y., asked attorneys representing Hostess and the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International union whether mediation could help the two resolve their issues and avoid the loss of more than 18,000 jobs.
'To me not to have gone through that step leaves a huge question mark over this case, which I think - I may be wrong - but I think will only be answered in litigation. And that’s no one’s desired outcome,' the judge said.
On Friday, Hostess announced that was going out of business, closing plants, laying off its 18,500 workers and putting its brands up for sale.
As the future of Twinkies hung in the balance, a war of words broke out between the unions and the snacks maker.
The Bakery, Confectionary, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union had claimed that the company would have gone out of business years ago if it hadn't been for the efforts of their employees.
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