Nabisco factory in New Jersey closing after 63 years

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Friday was the last day for residents of a New Jersey town to smell the sweet aroma of freshly baked Oreo cookies as the community’s Nabisco plant shut down after 63 years in operation.

Parent company Mondelez International confirmed it was the last day of production at the Fair Lawn plant, which has produced Oreos, Ritz crackers, Lorna Doone and Teddy Grahams since 1958.

The plant’s approximately 600 workers have either retired, transferred or were looking for other jobs, the company said.

Production began slowing when the company announced in February that it would close the plant in New Jersey and one in Atlanta.

“Both Fair Lawn and Atlanta are no longer strategic assets from a geographic footprint perspective and both face significant operational challenges, including aging infrastructure and outdated production capabilities, which would have required significant investment to bring them to the modernized state required for the future,” the company said in a statement in February.

The Atlanta plant closed in June. A plant in Richmond, Virginia, remains open.

Oreo cookies displayed on a store shelf
Nabisco, the maker of Oreo cookies and other treats, said its NJ plant’s approximate 600 workers have either retired, transferred or were looking for other jobs.
Getty Images
Ritz crackers displayed on a store shelf
Nabisco’s Fair Lawn, NJ, plant had produced Ritz and other cookies and crackers since 1958.
Getty Images

“I’m sorry to see this go,” said Melinda Ricco, who has worked at the plant for more than 27 years. Her parents originally worked at the factory in New York and came to New Jersey when it moved.

Local and state officials were disappointed the New Jersey plant was closing. Fair Lawn Mayor Kurt Peluso called it “disgusting.”

The company was reviewing bids for the plant from potential buyers. Records showed the total assessed value of the factory is $29.3 million.

Fair Lawn Nabisco Factory closing after 63 years
Production at the Fair Lawn factory began slowing in February when the company announced its closure.
Christopher Sadowski

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