Peaches and Creme: Spinrite, American Cotton & A Sad End

 Peaches and Creme has been an enduring part of my knitting life as long as I can remember. It’s one of the few natural fiber yarns that I could get at some place as big box as Walmart and it came in beautiful, bright colors. One of my many weaknesses is that I crave color. Buying fat little skeins of brightly-dyed cotton was the perfect, low-cost way to get this fix. The Mason-Dixon books gave P&C a big boost when they featured this great American yarn in many of their patterns. Who hasn’t knit at least one ballband dishcloth?

 Unfortunately, P&C has become another victim of our broken system here in America. I refuse to become political on my crafting. But I think this situation illustrates the kind of crap that happens when profit becomes the number 1 goal of so many people. Peaches and Creme has been bought out by another company and production in the US is being shut down. Before I jump into this, I’ll start a little earlier.

 Wal-Mart used to be a big customer of P&C yarns. My guess is that they were probably their largest account. Then, there was a sudden switch. Wal-Mart announced that they were switching some stores to Sugar and Cream yarn, which is produced by the Canadian company Spinrite. They would examine which product sold better and then stay with that product. I immediately knew something was wrong and I figured that this was more about corporate rhetoric than actually testing what product sold better. For whatever reason, probably price, Wal-Mart decided to switch to Sugar and Cream yarns instead. I was unhappy about this mainly because

1. Peaches and Creme is a superior product. It is made from long-staple American grown cotton, not the short staple odds and ends that S&C uses.
2. It comes in many different colors than S&C
3. Every other craft store in the area already carried S&C if I decided I desperately needed it.

Now it’s official. Peaches and Creme was bought by Spinrite, the Canadian company that produces Sugar and Cream. Technically, I should say Pisgah Yarn & Dyeing, which is the name of the now-defunct company.

Link to article about planting closing

Not only is the plant closing, but around 81 workers are out of luck because they have been denied funding from a fund that is supposedly aimed at helping American workers who have been hurt when their company is moved to other countries. Why have they been denied? Because technically, they only get this funding if the original company had moved to Canada. Since Spinrite purchased and moved the company (they are going to use the equipment), these poor unemployeed workers are SOL. Thanks a lot, government.

Link about out of work Pisgah employees

But here’s where it gets really interesting. None of this might have had to happen at all. Apparently, workers believe that the two men running the company chose to sell out so they could get the cash and run. What a charming move. One of the founder’s relatives who worked at the plant has some interesting things to add about this.

Pisgah Workers’ Perspectives

I just have to say that I am very sad. I went to the Peaches and Creme website, which is still functioning, and ordered around 20 balls of the very best, affordable cotton there was. A lot of the colors are out of stock, but there are still some available. Fabric.com also has limited available stock and free shipping once you hit $35. I made sure to get extra of my favorite color, Aqua Mist. It seems as if Spinrite just wanted the label and won’t be using any of the beautiful colorways from Pisgah, because here is the recent brochure some people were sent. In fact, it looks like they just slapped new labels onto the same old S&C colors.

‘New’ Peaches and Creme Brochure

I wanted to write this partly because I know a lot of people will be confused about what really happened. I also wanted to write this to express my own sadness about losing a genuinely American yarn company that produced a great product. The Peaches and Creme group on Ravelry is still a wonderful place to visit, so stop by to post your support and love for the original ballband yarn.

May 21, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . Snark Editorial.

17 Comments

  1. Susan replied:

    HI, I feel the same way you do.You wrote a very well written and informative article. I wish you could get this published. I am also a great lover of Peaches and Creme/Pisgah. I am heartbroken over what has happened.I lost two jobs since 2002 due to jobs leaving the country/economy.

    Just wanted to let you know what a great job you did writing this.

  2. Ivy replied:

    This just kills me — I grew up in that area. Keeping American industry alive should be a VITAL priority right now. There should be outrage, especially at Wal-Mart and the role they may have played in this.

    How can anyone say corporations like Wal-Mart are good for this country? I’ll never know.

  3. genuinelye replied:

    @Susan,

    Thanks. I think this case really illustrates what is going on in American manufacturing today and how ‘business’ isn’t always good for workers.

    @Ivy

    I agree so much. Wal-Mart played a big role in this. Sam Walton would have been outraged to see his company switch to an inferior non-American product for apparently no reason.

  4. jonesgirl replied:

    Thank you so much for writing a wonderful article about the demise of Pisgah Yarn and Dyeing. As a big fan of Peaches & Creme yarn, I am heartsick over the loss of the product.

  5. Suzanne replied:

    Excellent and important post. Unfortunately this is the way Wal-Mart treats suppliers; this is what they did to Rubbermaid. It’s appalling. And now they’re starting to make “Buy American” noises again, but it’s a bit late for that.

    • Amy replied:

      Unfortunately, the people who are running Walmart have gotten as greedy and money hungry as those who are running SpinWrong…Yes, the misspelling is intentional.

  6. Cherie Norquay replied:

    Thank you for this article. I will no longer be buying any yarn from Walmart but especially not from Spinrite. Wal-mart used to proudly advertise “Made in the USA”. Pisgah Yarn & Dyeing had been very generous a few years ago by donating yarn for our family to take to Uganda to teach women to crochet. All the mills have closed in Uganda and it was impossible to find cotton yarn anywhere even though cotton was sidely grown in the country. Now I guess the US is in the same boat. Is it some kind of conspiracy that Wal-mart is only endorsing products (and I made add they are JUNKY products) made in other countries?

  7. Peaches & Creme: CottonCloud’s High Prices « The Lumpy Sweater replied:

    […] posted previously about how Pisgah Yarn Company was sold to the Canadian firm SpinRite. Now I am posting briefly about something strange I discovered. I have been researching many of the […]

  8. Peaches & Creme: CottonCloud’s High Prices « The Lumpy Sweater replied:

    […] & Creme: CottonCloud’s High Prices  I posted previously about how Pisgah Yarn Company was sold to the Canadian firm SpinRite. Now I am posting briefly about something strange I discovered. I have been researching many of the […]

  9. Juli replied:

    Ah! I just started my yggdrasil afghan in Peaches n Creme… I guess I should hurry out and buy the last 2 cones for it… :/ Peaches N Creme was always my favorite 100% cotton yarn… I’ll just go cry now. kbye.

  10. Helle K. Berry aka GracieB replied:

    can I just say I used to work in the garment industry and load womenswear factories for a iconic American company and leave it at that?
    I will certainly miss this wonderful American cotton product!

  11. genuinelye replied:

    @GracieB,

    Of course you can leave it at that :) Thanks for posting your feelings about this truly lovely yarn we will all miss

  12. SweetestOne replied:

    The article on Elmore-Pisgah was excellent and very interesting with the links you supplied that show the new “catalogue,” comments from the workers, etc. I would encourage everyone who loves Peaches & Creme to BUY whatever they can afford now from the P&C website. You will wish you had later. I don’t know where I am going to put my 22 pound order, probably under my bed! But at least I have some of the colors I have always loved, and I too, am fed up with Walmart and their dismantled “crafts” department. I remember how disappointed I was when I saw them switch to S & C brand. I scrounged in the clearance corners for the last of P&C. Walmart had the best when they carried P & C. I rarely shop there anymore…. I have too many reasons not to, and the switch in yarn labels is just one more ! I have always considered P & C yarn to be superior…I understand the yard was manufactured differently , and of course, American made. It was so soft, and I had better luck with it not fading as badly as the other labels. Flo at P & C was always so sweet on the phone. To me, this is the end of an era.

    • genuinelye replied:

      Hey SweetestOne. I sympathize with your emotions about this. I placed my 3rd and final order a week or two ago. So sad.

  13. SweetestOne replied:

    Here;s the latest….check out your local Walmart and you might see the “new P & C” label on some cones there. Spotted 3 colors here in Ohio. It also appears that the S & C cones may be on clearance. Am going to try to contact SpinRite to see what they can tell me about P& C yarn production. Bet it’s the same Canadian yarn with new label. Looking at the new catalogue link, the P & C colors are dead ringers for the old Bernat/Sugar Creme yarns colors. Lots of old favorites missing.

    • Susan replied:

      They put their crappy sugar and cream yarn in labels with Peaches and Creme.

  14. Jennifer Robertson White replied:

    I’m going to miss all the great colors Peaches & Cream made. It’s too bad they are not going to have quality cotton yarn for sale anymore. :(

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