July 13, 2005 Albany-- In April, Bobs Candies sold the family owned business to candy conglomerate Farley's & Sathers of Minnesota. Wednesday, representatives from the company headquarters told employees in Albany, they may be out of a job on October 1st.
It was around lunchtime when employees learned their fate. Bobs Candies of Albany is tentatively scheduled to close in October, leaving about 250 people without jobs. But many of those people expected this outcome.
Since 1919, Bobs Candies has made Peppermint sticks in Albany, but on October 1st, "They might be closing down," said Bobs Candies Employee Chauncey Reese. "They don't know yet. They said they'd let us know by August."
Reese has worked at Bobs Candies for five years, and would like to continue working at the manufacturing facility. "I hope the same thing goes on. I hope it stays open longer. If it don't, we'll just have to go find another job."
Another job, because today he was told he may not have one for much longer, but he wasn't told why. "No ma'am. We'll probably know that in a couple of weeks."
In a telephone interview with Farley's & Sathers, President Dennis Nemeth said two manufacturing facilities weren't needed for Bobs, and preliminary findings showed the Reynosa, Mexico plant would be cheaper to operate and is centrally located.
The news that Bob may soon be history isn't suprising for Chauncey and coworkers. Is anybody upset? "No ma'am. Did ya'll kind of expect this? "Yes ma'am."
And they were never promised otherwise. This is what Nemeth said in an interview back when the company was sold. "We can't promise anything at this point in time. We've agreed to within the contract, there are specifications that I'm not totally aware of at this moment."
But at this moment, employees are still clinging on to a thread of hope. "I just hope everything will work out for the best."
July 8th was the last day the McCormack family, which sold the company in April worked at Bobs. Whether the employees will be offered a job at another facility or receive severance packages is part of the discussion the new company will have with Union over next 30 days.
You man remember Bobs Candies closed temporarily in 2002 because they couldn't secure an annual loan, but they fought back to have the company's most profitable years in 2003 and 2004.