Friday, December 7, 2012

Of Twinkies and hungry turkeys

Recently the Hostess Baking Company went bankrupt and closed. It made the national news mostly because they made the iconic Twinkies. I never bought any Hostess products except for an occasional Snowball so I didn't really give a care until today. But today, it suddenly hit home.

We make a trip over to Minneapolis every couple of weeks to shop at the Master Bakery "used bread" store. They sell bread that is near the "sell-by" date at half the price. We always stock up on English Muffin Toasting Bread. It's the very best for breakfast toast and also grilled cheese sandwiches, BLT's or French toast. It's basically the only bread we eat.

Ever since I began feeding the flock of turkeys this summer, we had been buying expired bread that they sell for animal feed. We could literally  buy a car trunk full of bread and buns for five dollars. The turkeys happily gobbled it up, along with the squirrels, birds and assorted other animals. It was a feast by the wooded lot twice a day. Little did I know that when they stopped making Twinkies and other Hostess products, it would trickle down to create a problem for my menagerie.

Today, when we asked to buy a cart of stale bread, the gal said they didn't have any. She told us that when Hostess Bakeries closed down, people who had been getting bread at the local Hostess thrift store started coming over to the Master Bread thrift store. She said a man came in one morning who was with an organization that provided food for homeless people. He bought 50 loaves of bread. She said they are clearing out their shelves every day now so there's no leftovers to sell for animals.

It brings home the interconnectedness of everything that happens--and I will miss those yummy Snowballs.

Hostess marshmallow-covered, cream-filled Snowball. They come in lavender for Easter, green for St Patrick's day and orange for Halloween plus white for every-day.

11 comments:

The Odd Essay said...

In another life I used to take weekend canoeing trips... I'd buy a box of a dozen Twinkies to sustain me for the weekend and have half of them gone before we had to finesse the first rapids. A couple of years ago Bill & I were at the NM State Fair & I bought a "deep fried Twinkie" (no kidding!).... I can't believe I ever ate those things! I'm still trying to figure out how the demise of Twinkies affected the day-old bread status? We, too, bought huge bags of "out of date" bread to feed the wild critters.... but we never did feed the wild turkeys Twinkies... hmmm.....

Jane and Chris said...

I've never had any of their products.
Time to start making your own bread!!!
Jane x

Susan said...

When we lived in Connecticut and would feed over 100 geese, ducks, deer and anything that walked or flew by, my hubby would stop by the bread store and buy a "cart load" to supplement cracked corn. I can understand your dilemma and heartache not to have treats for the birds. I have a recipe for homemade Twinkies and they sell a pan to make them so I won't miss buying them, but I feel badly for all those people that lost their jobs.

Joanne Noragon said...

Perhaps you can find a feed and seed store and buy corn for your wildlife.

Linda said...

Wow, thanks for sharing that, Ms. Sparrow. We don't get Twinkies here in Canada, and never have as far as I know. Well, not in Montreal, anyway. I do, however, like and purchase some of their other products, though, occasionally.

Mitchell is Moving said...

I was never a Twinkies fan and thought Sno Balls were a very adult choice. Too bad about your day-old bread outlet. Maybe things will settle down. As for Twinkies, they will surely rear their heads under another company (such as Bimbo).

troutbirder said...

Feeding people and wayward birds is a good cause though. I refuse to blame the whole demise of Hostess on the union though.... Perhaps the prospects of golden parachutes inspired the inept management to cash in....

The Owl Wood said...

I have little idea what a Twinky was but this is the season to be merry - you should be feeding the turkeys on humbugs and stuffing mix!

Ms Sparrow said...

Essay: I have heard of those deep-fried Twinkies but I would be leery of eating one.

Jane & Chris: Wonder Bread is one of the Hostess products, maybe you've heard of that--it "Builds Strong Bodies 8 Ways!"

Susan: So true, it would be a terrible blow to lose your job right before Christmas!

Joanne: My son-in-law gave me a 50-lb bag of cracked corn but it's nearly gone. What with Christmas shopping, I'm reluctant to spend the money.

Linda: Twinkies are just a yellow sponge cake filled with vanilla cream. If you love cream filling as much as I do, they're really good!

Mitchell: I'm glad you support the Snowball! There will probably be another baker taking over the Twinkie name eventually, but I've never heard of Bimbo--are they like Little Debbie?

Troutbirder: From what I've read, I got that impression too. Maybe the fact that their products were always priced higher than competitors also brought about their downfall.

Owl: Feed stuffing mix to a turkey? I'll have to think about that!

Crafty Green Poet said...

We've never had Twinkies over here as far as I know.

Old bread isn't probably the best food for most birds to be honest, though it's probably okay for turkeys and squirrels

Ms Sparrow said...

Poet: I don't see the birds eating the bread very much. They seem to like the cracked corn though. We seem to have mostly slate-colored juncos around. They're also called snowbirds because they come in the late fall and leave in the spring. There are also occasional blue jays and downy woodpeckers and black-capped chickadees. I think they all have other food sources.