Starbucks begins shutting down La Boulange bakeries

SAN FRANCISCO (KTVU) - Starbucks is pulling the plug Friday on a popular bay area pastry chain. The first two of 22 La Boulange bakeries are shutting down.

The La Boulange on Columbus Avenue and the one on Market Street in San Francisco are the first two stores that are closing Friday. Both stores close at 1 p.m.

KTVU spoke off camera with an employee who said he was sad. He's worked with the company for seven years so it's going to be hard for him to say goodbye.

La Boulange had been a fixture in San Francisco since 1996 and is known as a local's favorite.

You can find its food in Starbucks.

The coffee company bought the bakery chain three years ago for $100 million to boost its food offerings.

But in June, Starbucks announced that it was shutting down the stand alone bakeries because it wasn't sustainable for long term growth.

Starbucks has actually experienced a boost in sales since it started selling La Boulange products and the company plans on still selling them under the brand at its coffee houses across the country.

Starbucks officials have said if possible it would offer jobs to La Boulange employees at their coffee stores.

So far, the employees KTVU spoke with say they've been offered jobs, but turned them down.

The remaining Bay Area locations will be shut down over the next three weeks.