Production at the Clover Club plant here is expected to increase after the January closing of another snack food plant in California, but the extent of the change isn't known yet, a company spokesman said Thursday.
Borden Inc. will close its Laura Scudder's snack food plant in Tracy, Calif., by Jan. 31, an action that could put all of the plant's 344 employees out of work, the company has announced.Production of the Laura Scudder line of potato chips, tortilla chips and cheese-flavored products will be divided among the Kaysville plant and two others in Albuquerque, N.M., and Denver.
Otto Blements, Clover Club vice president of operations for the three plants, said the Kaysville facility is operating at 80 percent capacity now and will probably be brought up to full production to handle the additional work.
Blements said no decision has been made yet on which Laura Scudder products will be transferred to the various plants. Until those decisions are finalized, probably next week, no estimate of the impact on each plant or additional hiring can be made, he said.
New York-based Borden, which purchased the Anaheim-based Laura Scudder's snack food company a year ago, closed the only other California Laura Scudder's plant last January, laying off some 300 employees in Anaheim.
The closure of that plant and the announced closure of the Tracy facility stem from wage and pay disputes with the union workers, according to analysts.
"Consolidating operations is necessary to remain competitive in the snack foods industry," said Richard Brodkin, vice president and general manager of Laura Scudder's, which has annual sales of about $125 million. Brodkin said the company will begin phasing out of Tracy on Nov. 8.
Laura Scudder's will keep its brand name, its Anaheim administrative headquarters and its 18 California distribution centers. It will continue to employ about 600 people in the state.
A spokeswoman for Borden, which is the second largest U.S. producer of snack foods after Frito-Lay, said it was too early to tell whether any of the 344 employees at the Tracy plant will be offered jobs elsewhere.
The spokeswoman said consumers will not notice any change because of the closure. The out-of-state plants will provide regular supplies of Laura Scudder's snack foods for the California market.
Borden employs 45,000 people and expects to report sales this year of $7.4 billion.