FAIR LAWN, NJ - The news is out, the Mondelez bakery factory on Route 208 is considering a move out of town, or are they?
"This is the beginning of the process," said Laurie Guzzinati, Senior Director, Corporate & Government Affairs North America Mondelēz Global LLC out of East Hanover. "Right now, it's business as usual."
Mondelez, an American multinational food and beverage company with an annual revenue of more than $25 billion, is one of the largest producers of Oreo cookies in the world and employs 600 people at the Fair Lawn industrial park plant.
Part of the concern with the Fair Lawn plant is its age.
"How can we continue to maintain high quality production going forward in an aging facility," Guzzinati said. "That is part of the consideration."
Guzzinati said Mondelez met with the union last week, but stated strongly, "no decision has been made."
Earlier in the week, Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) said he was working with Mayor Kurt Peluso and Gov. Phil Murphy to keep the 60-year-old bakery in Fair Lawn.
Peluso said he was going to "work like hell" to keep the plant in town.
Guzzinati said the company remains committed to New Jersey and U.S. production, in spite of mentions of a move to Mexico. "This is about US production and what makes sense geographically," she said.
There are six plants in the U.S., one in Portland, Oregon; two in the midwest--Chicago and Naperville, IL; and three on the east coast, including Atlanta, Georgia; Richmond, Virginia; and Fair Lawn.
"We're committed to New Jersey," Guzzinati said. The corporate offices for the snack giant are in East Hanover.
No decision about such a closure is expected until at least the middle of next year, she said.