The closure of the Whippet biscuit factory, announced since 2019, will become a reality next August. Around 150 employees are affected.
Posted at 9:00 am
The news was shared with employees last May. These were not surprised. The factory was initially scheduled to close in 2020, then the fateful date was pushed back to 2021.
“During COVID, issues such as travel restrictions have delayed the full implementation of our expansion at our Cambridge, Ontario facility,” said Sidney Dare, media relations manager at Dare Foods, in an email. “We are grateful for the commitment and flexibility of these employees at the Saint-Lambert plant, especially during this difficult period leading up to the plant’s closure,” she adds.
This will then be the end of Quebec-made whippets. The popular marshmallow and chocolate biscuit was created in 1901 by the Viau biscuit factory. As a testament to the place it holds in Quebec’s popular history, the Whippet was exhibited at the Écomusée du fier monde in 2008.
The derelict factory, inaugurated in 1963, is demolished to make way for residential development.
In this context, the Dare Coupal project – named after the previous occupants of the premises, Dare and Rona-Matériaux Coupal – led by promoter Pur Immobilia saw the construction of a series of buildings ranging from three to eight floors in the immediate vicinity in front of the train station, as well as Local suppliers and several green spaces.
In response to popular dissatisfaction, the city of Saint-Lambert has since proposed a new special urban plan that limits the number of floors on the two lots. Public consultations are scheduled for this month. The adoption of urban planning instruments is planned for July.
Extension in Sainte-Martine
Dare is still present in Quebec, in Sainte-Martine, in Montérégie. This is where Grissol branded rusks and croutons are made.
“We’re introducing a new product line there, we’re expanding the building, we’re installing a new production line, and we’re hiring new people to work on that new line and that new product,” Sidney Dare said, without giving any further details.
Dare, a privately owned Canadian family business that began operations in 1892, currently employs 1,300 people. Its biscuits, crackers, rusks and candies are sold in more than 50 countries.