For more than 45 years Russell Stover Candies has been part of the Montrose business landscape, but that's about to change.

The chocolate manufacturer announced this week while it is expanding facilities in Kansas and Texas it will be closing the Montrose plant next year. The expansion will add about 300 jobs to the Russell Stover workforce, but a number of retail locations across the country are also being shuttered.

Russell Stover has been one of the biggest names in the candy-making industry for near 100 years. The company started in 1923 in the Denver kitchen of Clara and Russell Stover. The Montrose location was the company's 4th candy factory to be built when it came to Montrose in 1973. In 1995, the company added a warehouse to the Montrose factory, and a 10,000 square foot retail outlet.

Not only will hundreds of jobs be lost, but the community of Montrose also loses a long-standing landmark and tourist attraction. No doubt, it's a sad day for Montrose and western Colorado.

[CANDY INDUSTRY]