FAIR LAWN, NJ — Today, November 16, 2020, U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) outlined steps he’s taking in reaction to the announcement that Mondelez, an American multinational food and beverage company with an annual revenue of more than $25 billion, is likely closing its Fair Lawn bakery manufacturing plant, which could impact approximately 600 employees. The Mondelez plant has been in Fair Lawn for more than sixty years and is one of the largest producers of Oreo cookies in the world. The plant’s employees have worked multiple shifts, risking their own health, during the pandemic to meet skyrocketing demand.
Closing the facility would have a devastating impact on the local economy, including to the town and to all of the jobs that depend on the plant.
Gottheimer has spoken with Mondelez senior leadership, national and local Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers, and Grain Millers union leadership, local officials, and Governor Murphy. Gottheimer has also formally sent letters to Mondelez International CEO Dirk van de Put and President, North America Glen Walter, and Gottheimer is staying in close touch with elected officials in the Borough of Fair Lawn.
“The closing of this facility would have a devastating impact on 600 hardworking men and women and their families right here in North Jersey — workers who may no longer be able to put food on their tables in the midst of a global pandemic,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) today. “They have been loyal to the company for more than six decades, and worked multiple shifts during the height of the crisis, putting their own health on the line. I’m strongly urging Mondelez’s leadership to reconsider, to keep these jobs here in North Jersey, and to help make sure these workers can continue providing for their families. I’ve requested an emergency meeting with Mondelez for a detailed briefing on all the factors in their decision. Demand for Oreos has skyrocketed during the pandemic, raising questions about the plant closure. We all fear that these jobs will move to Mexico, which is clearly unacceptable.”
This announcement from Mondelez comes during the ongoing COVID-19 public health and economic crisis. Since the start of the pandemic in mid-March, a total of 1.78 million New Jersey residents have applied for unemployment thus far.