June 23, 2013

Hostess: Twinkies to return to shelves July 15

The Associated Press

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FILE - A Hostess Twinkies sign is shown at the Utah Hostess plant in Ogden, Utah, in this Nov. 15, 2012 file photo. Hostess Brands Inc. says it's in talks with more than 100 parties interested in buying its brands, which include Twinkies, Ding Dongs and Ho Hos. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

AP

In the months since they vanished from shelves, the cakes have been getting a few touchups as well. For the CupCakes, the company is now using dark cocoa instead of milk chocolate to give them a richer, darker appearance.

Seban stressed that the changes were to improve the cakes, not to cut costs. Prices for the cakes will remain the same; a box of 10 Twinkies will cost $3.99.

Looking ahead, Seban sees Hostess expanding its product lineup. He noted that Hostess cakes are known for three basic textures: the spongy cake, the creamy filling and the thicker icing. But he said different textures – such as crunchy – could be introduced, as well as different flavors.

"We can have some fun with that mixture," he said.

He also said there are many trendy health attributes the company could tap into, such as gluten-free, added fiber, low sugar and low sodium.

During bankruptcy proceedings, Hostess had said that its overall sales had been declining, although the company didn't give a breakout on the performance of individual brands. But Seban is confident Twinkies will have staying power beyond its re-launch.

As for the literal shelf-life, Seban is quick to refute the snack cake's fabled indestructibility.

"Forty-five days – that's it," he said. "They don't last forever."

 

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