Bob Evans Closes Plant

In a continuing sign of the hard times we live in, Bob Evans Farms–which runs both factories and a chain of retail restaurants across the Midwest–announced recently that they will shutter their plant in Galva, Ill. The sausage plant, which has operated since 1972, employed about 70 people.

Why is Bob Evens Closing Up Shop?

In explaining the move, Bob Evans Food Products President Mike Townsley said that the company was being forced to take these measures in order to “adapt to these tough market conditions.” The move leaves Bob Evans Foods with just four additional plants in Xenia and Bidwell, Ohio, Hillsdale, Michigan and Richardson, Texas.

The move is seen as a further blow to the hard hit town of Galva where the recession has already taken a severe toll and unemployment remains high. City administrator Dave Dyer described the move as a “major blow” to the city where the sausage and restaurant chain had been one of the major employers.

From Humble Origins…

The company began life as a single truck stop style diner in Rio Grande, Ohio.  Under the steady hand of founder Bob Evans, the company grew to offer a total of 570 locations throughout 23 states and later became a major food processor as well.

Famous for their sausages, which Mr. Evans had always heard from his friends was “the best around,” the company started packing sausage and became a major sausage company after Bob Evans turned to his cousin Tim Evans who owned a meat packing company.

The Evans Packing Company made an agreement to package the Bob Evans sausages and both cousins went on to extreme fame and fortune. Mr. Evans passed away in 2007 at his ranch in Ohio and the company is now managed through corporate headquarters in Columbus, Ohio.

Hard Times for Bob Evans’ Stock Prices, Good Times for Gross Earnings

Investors of late have been punishing the stock, with shares of the company trading at or near their 52 week low of $23.10 for some time. In other news however, the company did post the highest gross earnings in the restaurant industry meaning they should be expected to rebound. .

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