Advertisement
California

Coronavirus forces See’s Candies to suspend production for first time since World War II

A gloved worker works with boxes of chocolates.
The first See’s store was opened in L.A. in 1921 by three members of an immigrant family.
(Bryan Chan / Los Angeles Times)

See’s Candies, a California chocolate institution, is suspending production because of the coronavirus.

It’s only the second time in See’s 99-year history that production has been interrupted, the first being when it was halted due to rationing during World War II.

“Given the current events with COVID-19, and our concern for the health and safety of our employees, we have made the decision to initiate an interruption once again,” the South San Francisco company said in a statement. “We will work to keep you updated as we develop plans to safely resume operations.”

The first See’s store opened in Los Angeles in 1921 by a trio of Canadian immigrants: Charles See; his wife, Florence; and his mother, Mary. That grandmotherly face on See’s trademark black-and-white boxes belongs to Mary See, and her recipes were the foundation of the operation.

Advertisement

In 2017, See’s Candies was expecting to sell between $400 million and $450 million of candy, and had 1,500 employees, with more workers added during the winter holidays.


Newsletter
The stories shaping California

Get up to speed with our Essential California newsletter, sent six days a week.

You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.
Advertisement