ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — Benzel’s has announced that their Altoona factory outlet store has closed for good with the start of the new year.

The outlet store closed its doors on New Year’s Eve after more than 60 years of being open to the public. The company took to its Facebook page and delivered the news with two short sentences.

“Factory Outlet Store permanently closed 12-31-22. Thank you for your patronage,” the Facebook post reads

The company also sent us this statement about how they need the space for production as they company continues to see “immense growth.”

“The past several years have been a great challenge and we have undergone many changes as we like many of you tried to deal with the endless issues which still plague us. That said there has been one positive. We are experiencing immense growth and we are in the process of expanding our manufacturing facility by using what is currently underutilized space to improve efficiency and bolster capacity having made substantial investments in automation to get ahead of the labor market.”

-Ann Benzel, Benzel’s

Benzel added that they have the ability to bake 4,000 pounds of pretzels an hour and expanding the factory operation should allow them to run two shifts at full capacity to prevent having to turn down customers and orders.

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In 1911, Adolf Benzel opened up the Benzel factory in Altoona after working for other bakers throughout Pennsylvania.