Mondelez International (NASDAQ:MDLZ), owner of the Oreo cookie brand along with other popular brand-name chips and crackers, said today that it's planning to hire 1,000 more employees in the United States to meet current demand for food. The company is specifically looking for candidates recently laid off from other businesses. Layoffs resulting from coronavirus fears and closures disrupting all sectors of the economy have potentially created a pool of experienced workers for companies like Mondelez to draw on.
The same announcement revealed that approximately 10,000 "front line" workers will receive a temporary pay raise, lasting from March 23 through May 2. The $2-per-hour raise will go to hourly employees working in sales, distribution, and manufacturing, to be paid as a lump sum at the end of the specified period.
Mondelez sales representatives will receive a $125-per-week bonus over the same period. The company has also earmarked $15 million in emergency relief funds and donations of goods for "helping the communities and populations that have been hit hardest by COVID-19," to be administered through its Mondelez International Foundation. It has already made $1 million in donations in China, the first country to suffer from the coronavirus' effects.
Mondelez has recently seen an upswing in sales driven by a sharp rise in comfort food purchases since the American outbreak of COVID-19 gathered steam in March. Other companies making similar foods have also seen a recent upward spike in sales.