LANDOVER, Md., March 14, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Smithfield Packing Company, Inc., a subsidiary of Smithfield Foods, Inc. (NYSE:SFD), announced today that it plans to shift bone-in ham production from its Landover, Maryland, plant to its facilities in North Carolina and Kentucky, and then permanently close the Landover plant by early fall.
Closing the Landover plant will affect about 175 hourly and salaried employees. Some employees will be offered transfers to other Smithfield Packing facilities, and the company also will negotiate with United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) union officials regarding other potential opportunities related to this transition.
"We deeply regret having to close this facility because we recognize that layoffs and plant closings are difficult for everyone concerned," said Tim Schellpeper, president of Smithfield Packing.
"However, the Landover plant is a facility that no longer meets our ever-changing production needs. We will work diligently to transfer as many employees as possible to our other operations," Schellpeper said.
The company will comply with the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN), and will provide employees with a 60-day notification of the plant closure. Under the WARN Act, the company also will notify state dislocated worker units so that they can promptly offer dislocated worker assistance.
About Smithfield Packing
The Smithfield Packing Company, Inc., was founded in 1936 by Joseph W. Luter and his son, Joseph W. Luter, Jr. Primary lines of business include fresh pork, smoked meats, bacon, cooked hams and hot dogs for retail, foodservice and deli channels. The company exports products to approximately 30 countries. In addition to the Smithfield brand, its Gwaltney, Esskay, and Cumberland Gap products are among the leaders in their respective markets. For more information, visit www.smithfield.com.
About Smithfield Foods
Smithfield Foods is a $13 billion global food company and the world's largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including Smithfield®, Eckrich®, Farmland®, Armour®, Cook's®, Gwaltney®, John Morrell®, Kretschmar®, Curly's®, Carando®, Margherita®, and Healthy Ones®. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental, and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com and www.smithfieldcommitments.com.
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CONTACT: Keira Lombardo
Smithfield Foods, Inc.
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