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Mother's Cookies abruptly shut down

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article...

This is too bad...atlhough I have to say the recipes haven't kept up with time, or something.

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  1. No more circus animals and cookie parade?! Those were definitely a guilty pleasure!

    11 Replies
      1. re: Ruth Lafler

        And no more iced oatmeal cookies either. )-; Iced oatmeal and the taffy cookies that Ruth mentioned were a summertime tradition in our family...we ALWAYS had a bag or two as dessert when we went to the beach. *scampers off to grab a couple of bags of the white/black/orange iced circus animals before they are sold out*

        1. re: chocolateninja

          were the iced oatmeal the same ones I always thought of as iced raisin? yes, a picnic tradition for me too....

          1. re: susancinsf

            man, I loved those iced raisin cookies. I feel sad....this economic thing is really starting to hit home :-(

        2. re: Ruth Lafler

          :'( i LOOOOOVED taffy cookies...

          i wish some company would buy them out and continue the history...

          1. re: Emme

            Don't be surprised if Nabisco buys them. At least, that is the hot rumor of the day. For whatever that's worth.

        3. re: tatertot

          I forgot about Cookie Parade. I ate a bunch of that in college, being cheap and all. I remember eating all the double fudge creams, then the choc-chip, then the circus animals.

          I might have to make a stop somewhere and get some, just because it's the end of the line. OTOH, perhaps a specialty bakery will buy the recipes and produce them on a small scale.

          1. re: tatertot

            Consider checking at your Grocery Outlet store.

            I was at the Marina store on Sun., 10/19 & there was a huge tower of cases iced circus animal cookies plus something other variety by the front door. Had to miss the pink/purple striped bags. Unfortunately, not being a fan, I didn't notice the prices or expiration dates.

            1. re: Stephanie Wong

              My bro-in-law found a stash at some of the local Targets as well.

              1. re: Stephanie Wong

                Yes, you will find TONS of Mother's cookies at G.O. Expriation dates are mostly March and April of 09, but check the packages. Retails are $1.49 for all varieties and sizes.

                1. re: David Carlson

                  I only saw chocolate chip and iced oatmeal at the Oakland G.O. -- I'll keep looking for the others!

            2. Hit Lucky's to hoard until situation stabilizes, if possible. Selected cookies 2 for $5 for this week or while they last.

              2 Replies
              1. re: wolfe

                There ain't going to be any stabilizing. This company is done. The drivers did not and aren't going to be paid for last week. They've been on the brink for awhile now. The situation was bad enough that long time employees left over the last few months because of fears for their jobs. And now with their credit line drying up and no available money for the future was the nail in the coffin.

                1. re: chipman

                  Well that's a sort of stable. Like Larabaru, Petrinis etc.

                1. re: JasmineG

                  I haven't eaten these in a long time -- but it makes me sad too. The animal cookies were a treat in lunch bags in our home growing up.

                2. For those that are old enough to remember, the jingle:
                  Mother's, are like no others,
                  they're the cookies in the passionate purple package.

                  1. no doubt the circus animals were completely unhealthy, trans fats, sugar, refined flour.... they were always a treat when i found them in my sack lunch growing up.

                    1. Mother's still has a production facility in Louisville, Kentucky so it is unlikely that our favorites are gone forever.

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: Carrie 218

                        A spokesman for Archway & Mother's Cookie Co. said "its operations will be folded into company bakeries in Ashland, Ohio, and Kitchener, Canada." This should insure that the quest for snacks with transfats will not be in vain.

                        1. re: wolfe

                          FWIW I'm sitting here munching on my highly prized find of Circus Animal cookies (What IF they had shutdown forever!?) and note that the bag proclaims zero transfats.

                          1. re: SLRossi

                            Wish I could say the same about my healthy oatmeal cookies.
                            Yours must be a new recipe. This information shows transfats with partially hydrogenated vegetable oil.
                            http://www.thedailyplate.com/nutritio...

                            Mother's Cookies Circus Animal, Frosted Cookies
                            Made by:Archway & Mother's Cookie Company, Inc.
                            Ingredients:
                            Sugar, Enriched Flour (Bleached Wheat Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Vegetable Oil Shortening (Partially Hydrogenated Palm Kernel, Soybean, Cottonseed and/or Canola Oil), Skim Milk, Corn Starch, Contains 2% or Less of: High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup, Salt, Leavening (Baking Soda, Ammonium Bicarbonate), Artificial Flavor, Eggs, Soybean Lecithin, Color (Containing Titanium Dioxide, FD&C Red No. 40 Lake, Red No. 3, Yellow No. 5 and No. 6, Blue No. 1 and No. 2, Red No. 40), Confectioner's Glaze, Carnauba Wax.

                          2. re: wolfe

                            I was just about to ask whether that wasn't the same company as Archway. They just shut down in Ohio. It was on the news the other night... with no warning, no severance, no buyouts, no nothing, NADA!

                            WOW.

                            Was that precipitated by the trans-fat ban?

                            1. re: ChefJune

                              It is interesting after comparing 2 nutrition labels for animal cookies. One has 220 calories per serving,no # of cookies mentioned, and the other has 150 calories for 6 cookies. I think that if a serving has less than .5 grams of transfat it can be reported a 0. By cutting the serving size by 1/3, based on the calories count, the transfat mysteriously disappears. Of course, I could be wrong.

                              1. re: wolfe

                                The 150 cal label contains only fully hydrogenated palm oil.

                                1. re: SLRossi

                                  The ingredient list on the net was from the 150 calories. They must have changed the formula, excuse me, recipe.
                                  http://www.zeer.org/Food-Products/Mot...

                        2. I grew up eating their chocolate chip cookies and the circus animals (so much better than animal crackers per a kid's perspective). Our Safeway already had a notice that they will not be stocking more. Their shelf was practically empty of Mother's cookies. That's so sad.

                          I still remember their commercial a couple of years back when they were based in Oakland and filmed the Oakland employees doing a song and dance number in the factory.

                          Take solace that they filed for Chapter 11, reorganization, instead of Chapter 7, liquidation. That means somebody will infuse them with cash and the cookie parade will once again continue.

                          1. safeway has 2 for $5 on select varieties this week

                            1. Hmmm...I am confused. Can someone straighten me out? I read a Michigan/Battle Creek newspaper report that the chapter 11 involved the Mother's plant in Ohio and the Archway Headquarters plant in Michigan. The story also stated that the Canada plant was not affected by the bankruptcy filing. Question: what do they make in the Canada plant? Can we assume the traditional assortment of pink cookies and animal crackers will still come out of the Canadian plant? Guh??

                              1. Mother's Cookies, the taffy ones available @ Oakland (end cap at rear of store, I think on the right side of freezer section if you are facing the front door) and at Berkeley (immediately to the left of the door as soon as you walk in.) $1.49/package at both stores.

                                1. I just bought a bag of the March 09 Circus Animal cookies at my local Fresh & Easy in Soutthern California. It says "Manurfactured for Archway & Mother's Cookie Company Inc" Battle Creek, MI. As far as transfat...0 Transfat PER SERVING.

                                  But, the second ingredient is "hydrogenated palm kernel oil".(why do they need to hydrogenate that!) so yes I think you are right about reducing the serving size. As if I could eat just 6 at a time.

                                  Ingredients from the panel
                                  Calories are 150 cals for 6 cookies (29 grams).
                                  Sugar, hydrogenated palm kernel oil, enriched bleached flour,skim milk, corns starch, 2% or less of hfcs, corn syrup, salt, leavening, artificial flavor, eggs, soy lecithin, colors, confectioners glaze, carnauba wax.

                                  I think I'm glad I've had this last fling with them.

                                    1. Why has no one mentioned Mother's ENGLISH TEA COOKIES?!! What a guilty pleasure.

                                      1. It looks like Kellogg's is going to reintroduce the Mother's cookies brand sometime this summer: http://www.seriouseats.com/2009/01/wh...

                                        4 Replies
                                        1. re: asianstamp

                                          Apparently Nabisco beat them too it. I just purchased both the circus animal cookies and the iced oatmeal cookies at Safeway yesterday. They did not have all the varieties but Nabisco has produced about 6 of them.

                                          1. re: asianstamp

                                            Yes, it looks like they're going to be back. Here's a link to a 55¢ coupon:
                                            http://www.motherscookies.com/Special...

                                            1. re: silleehillee

                                              Yay! I guess I can go ahead and consume the ones I've been hoarding.

                                            2. article in the NY Times today paints a less palatable picture of what was really going on...

                                              http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/31/bus...