HARTSVILLE, S.C., June 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Sonoco (NYSE: SON), one of the largest diversified global packaging companies, today announced its intention to enter into consultation with the workforce regarding the potential closure of the Carrickmacross facility in November 2013. The plant makes thermoformed packages for a range of food processors primarily in Ireland and other parts of Europe.
"Due to shifting market conditions and a financially challenging competitive environment, we have made the difficult decision to consider the shut-down of operations at our Carrickmacross packaging plant. This decision in no way reflects on the performance of our Carrickmacross employees who have always provided high levels of commitment, safety, quality and productivity," said Jeff DiPasquale, vice president and general manager, Thermoforming, Sonoco Plastics.
"If a shut-down of the facility is the final outcome, we will work diligently to ensure the closing of the Carrickmacross facility goes as smoothly as possible, not only for our employees, but also for our loyal customers, with minimal disruption to the quality and service they have come to expect," added DiPasquale.
The Company reported that the business had been experiencing a loss of volume and profitability over the past several years and this pattern is continuing through 2013, leaving no viable option other than to consider closure of the facility.
"In the eventuality that this closure takes place, we are committed to working with each and every Sonoco employee affected by this decision. We would provide eligible employees with competitive severance, outplacement services and support in finding alternate employment," said Sean Cairns, vice president of Rigid Paper and Plastics operations for Sonoco in Europe.
In the event the plant does shut down, Sonoco does not expect the first reduction in jobs to occur until October 2013. After that time, the Company's plan would be to gradually scale back operations, targeting a plant closure on November 1, 2013. Until and if that time comes, operations will continue as normal.
Sonoco anticipates that up to 49 positions may become redundant if closure is determined to be the final decision. The company will consult with employee representatives from its Employee Forum to try and find ways to avoid the needs for redundancies, to reduce the number of employees affected and to mitigate the consequences of redundancies for employees. We will be considering alternatives such as retirement, voluntary redundancies and possible redeployment to other Sonoco operations.
About Sonoco Founded in 1899, Sonoco is a global provider of a variety of consumer packaging, industrial products, protective packaging and packaging supply chain services. With annualized net sales of approximately $4.8 billion, the Company has 19,900 employees working in 348 facilities in 35 countries, serving many of the world's best known brands in some 85 nations. Sonoco is a proud member of the 2012/2013 Dow Jones Sustainability World Index. For more information on the Company, visit our website at www.sonoco.com.