Oberweis Dairy Inc., based in Illinois, has declared bankruptcy under Chapter 11. The company expressed its intention to continue normal operations as it undergoes the process.

The company, famous for its ice cream and milk in glass bottles, has announced the loss of 127 jobs at its North Aurora facility, effective June 11. This notification was part of a filing under the Illinois Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act.

While the future of its retail outlets remains uncertain, Oberweis has assured that it plans to keep the stores operational during the bankruptcy proceedings. The company stressed its commitment to maintaining service and product quality.

“At Oberweis, we, like many other companies, have been forced to make some very difficult decisions related to the structure of our company. These difficult decisions are always made with full consideration of other options and with an eye towards the best future for our company,” the company said. They aim to manage debts while actively seeking a buyer.

Oberweis emphasized its dedication to delivering high-quality products and exceptional service. They filed for bankruptcy protections voluntarily on Friday in the Northern District of Illinois, revealing debts exceeding $4 million to their top 20 creditors.

The largest single debt is over $774,000, owed to a Hudson-based transportation company. Oberweis employs about 1,100 people, a number that spikes to over 1,500 during the summer due to increased ice cream demand.

The business started in 1915 when Peter Oberweis began selling milk from a horse-drawn wagon. Their first ice cream shop opened in Aurora in 1951.

With over 30 locations in Illinois and additional stores in Missouri, Michigan, and Indiana, the impact of the bankruptcy on these outlets is not yet clear. A recent court filing requested approval to continue paying employees, highlighting the need to retain them during this critical time.

Oberweis Dairy remains a family-owned enterprise, affiliated with Republican state politician Jim Oberweis.

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