The Philadelphia company that gives the region's hoagies and cheese steaks their iconic taste has made it official: They are closing their plant in the city and moving to New Jersey.
Amoroso's Baking Company will lay off approximately 200 people beginning October 6 when it closes its bakery on South 55th Street in southwest Philly, according to a mass layoff notice sent to Pennsylvania's Department of Labor and Industry.
The company will open a massive new facility in Bellmawr, New Jersey, and says employees can re-apply for their jobs.
Joe Mignogna, 75, who has worked for Amoroso's for 59 years -- he said he's the company's longest serving employee -- said the move will be good for the company.
"We can't put anything else in here," Mignogna said. "It's too small."
Mignona has made a move with Amoroso's before. He began working at the company's plant at 65th and Haverford.
For Mike Peluso, a production foreman with 41 years on the job who lives in Drexel Hill, the move means higher gas and tolls on his commute. But he says workers who rely on public transit may have a harder time -- many shifts at the bakery start at 2 a.m. or 3 a.m.
But the big question: Will the rolls taste the same?
"I don't know," Peluso said. "I haven't tried them yet."
The facility in New Jersey was spurred by a $20 million tax credit in New Jersey, along with a merger of the Ginsburg Bakery of Atlantic City. The new plant will help New Jersey retain 205 jobs, and an additional 140 are expected to be hired.