File Photo – Jelly Belly Candy Company in North Chicago | Photo: Google Street View

The Jelly Belly manufacturing plant in North Chicago will permanently close after over 110 years in operation and dozens of employees will be laid off.

Ferrara, the company that owns Jelly Belly Candy Company, announced this week it had made the “difficult decision” to end manufacturing operations at its plant in North Chicago.

The company said they performed a careful review of the current volumes produced at the plant and decided to move manufacturing to another facility.

The final day of plant production is expected to be no later than October 11.

66 employees who work at the plant will be laid off.

Ferrara said they are focused on helping their North Chicago team members.

“For our 66 impacted employees, we are hopeful they will stay with Ferrara in different positions and are offering the opportunity to move to open roles in our five other Chicagoland manufacturing facilities,” the company said in a statement.

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Ferrara said they anticipate no impact on the Jelly Belly brand, the products or the service to their customers. “Jelly Belly remains a critical component of our growth trajectory.”

The North Chicago factory is over 110 years old. It opened in 1913 and was initially called Goelitz Confectionery Company.

According to the company, a handful of workers crafted, hand-poured and packaged fine-quality buttercream candies, including the highly successful Candy Corn.

The sons of Gustav Goelitz, a German immigrant who learned the art of candy making a generation before, purchased the land and built a factory for the family’s growing candy venture.

Within a few years of producing in North Chicago during World War I, the United States Navy was months away from implementing plans to use the factory for military production.

The effort was dropped when the war ended suddenly. The company has made candy in the same location ever since.

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The company changed its name to Jelly Belly Candy Company in 2001.