Maple Leaf Announces Closure of Winnipeg Primary Pork Processing Plant

CANADA - Maple Leaf has announced it will close its primary pork processing operation on Marion Street in Winnipeg in October as part of its effort to centralize its primary pork processing operations in Brandon, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 19 July 2007
clock icon 3 minute read

In October 2006 Maple Leaf Foods announced plans for a major restructuring including a shift in its focus away from primary pork production into value added meats and meals.

Maple Leaf Consumer Foods vice president labor relations Norm Sabapathy explains the restructuring, dubbed Project Renaissance, is all about optimizing and balancing the company's value supply chain.

Norm Sabapathy-Maple Leaf Consumer Foods

We have previously stated and we're working towards having a single primary pork processing operation in Brandon, Manitoba on a double shifted plant.

To coincide with ramping that double shifted plant up, the Marion Street plant will wind down.

That's going to commence in September.

So right after Labor Day we'll start reducing operations here and the final operations will cease on October 26th of '07.

We currently have between 150 and 200 producers that supply hogs to the Marion Street location and all of those producers will have the opportunity to transition their hog supply directly to Brandon.

Overall we are going to reduce our primary processing volumes, that's right across the country.

But in Brandon itself we currently process about 50 thousand hogs per week today and when we double shift the plant that will increase to around 86 thousand hogs per week.

Sabapathy notes action is currently underway in Brandon to prepare for the double shift, which will commence in September of 2007, and the plant will have a full double shift by 2009 or before.

He anticipates many of the Marion Street employees will transfer to the Brandon plant and the company is looking at providing other opportunities in Brandon and at other internal facilities in the region.

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