Some 350 employees were notified earlier this week that the plant would be shut down sometime in August. Swanson said the Cincinnati-based company has not determined a hard closing date.
The company is doing three or four things for the employees who will be losing their jobs. Swanson said as openings at four other Pierre plants develop in the interim, employees in Rome will be offered an opportunity to move. Pierre also has plants in Claremont, N.C., Easley, S.C., Amherst, Ohio and Cincinnati, Ohio.
For every year of service, employees will be given a week’s severance pay. Anyone due vacation time will have that cashed out and those employees who participate in the Pierre benefits package will have those benefits paid for between one and five months depending on length of employment.
Rome City Manager John Bennett lamented the loss of another major employer, as well as one of the city’s major water and sewer customers. “They’re also a major taxpayer for Rome and Floyd County, not only the real estate, but the personal property and inventory,” Bennett said.
Al Hodge, President of the Greater Rome Chamber of Commerce said that the Chamber had been working with Pierre as recently as last week, completing paperwork to assist the company with exports.
The Rome plant is a primary processor of pre-cooked chicken products along with beef, pork and veal.
Press releases forwarded to the Rome News-Tribune
CINCINNATI, OH - Pierre Foods announced today that its Rome, Georgia manufacturing plant, located at 432 Lavender Drive, is slated to cease production in August, 2010.
The decision impacts about 350 workers who will receive a severance package based on their tenure with the company. Rome employees will be considered for opportunities with other Pierre facilities.
"We have undertaken a company-wide review of our capacity and determined that we must consolidate some of our manufacturing assets and align our capacity more closely to our needs," said Mike Zelkind, Senior Vice President of Operations. "It's the right business decision for Pierre, but we regret the job loss for our dedicated Rome employees."
The closure and workforce reductions will take place over the next several months.
The Rome operations will be consolidated in an existing Pierre manufacturing plant in Cincinnati as well as other Pierre locations. The Company, which has just recently expanded its operations in Claremont NC, expects to be adding positions in selected locations based on the product mix produced at that plant.
Click here to read about the Zartic plant in Cedartown closing in 2008