|Shelves Stocked for Twinkies' Comeback|
|By ALEXIS SHAW (@ashaw109)||Jul 15, 2013, 9:32 AM|
Let "the sweetest comeback in the history of ever" commence.
Twinkies make their official nationwide return to retailers today, making their first appearance since they were pulled from shelves in November.
The snacks' triumphant re-emergence was made possible by the private equity firms Apollo Global Management and Metropoulous & Co., which struck a $410 million deal with Hostess Brands when it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
In taking over the iconic snack brand, the firms have ensured that not just Twinkies would be back for mass consumption. CupCakes, Donettes, Zingers, HoHos and Ding Dongs will also go on sale nationwide on Monday as well.
The new Twinkies' have some differences from the original tried and true formula that fans have come to know and love. The snack's shelf life has extended to 45 days, almost three weeks longer than the 26 days the former Twinkie was supposed to stay fresh.
"America wanted Hostess back -- they wanted the original. Very soon consumers will once again be able to enjoy Twinkies, CupCakes and other great Hostess snack cakes. A comeback by any other name could never be as sweet," Daren Metropoulos, principal of Metropoulos & Co., said in a statement to ABC News in June upon the news of the snacks' highly anticipated return.
But some stores broke the spongy cake embargo set for July 15 and put the cream-filled treats on their shelves earlier than the company called for.
Wal-Mart announced that the cakes would be available at about 1,6000 stores on Friday, and that nearly 4,000 of its U.S. stores would stock the snacks by Sunday morning, The Associated Press reported.
Supermarket operator Kroger, which owns Ralphs, Fry's and Food 4 Less, also said the cakes were available in about a quarter of its more than 2,400 stores Friday and planned for more boxes to line shelves over the weekend, the AP reported.
But the snack manufacturer said in a statement it shipped out products for retailers to sell the treats on Monday.
"Hostess has not, and is not, giving any particular retailer exclusivity or preference to have products first and is making a great effort to fulfill orders equally and timely to everyone," the company said in a statement to the AP.
ABC News' Susanna Kim contributed to this report.