UPDATE -- 10 a.m.
The Wayne Farms line closing will effect approximately 560 employees at the Dothan plant. The layoff process is expected to be complete by June 8th.
OAKWOOD, Ga. (APRIL 2, 2014) – Wayne Farms LLC announced today that it has recently entered into a long term agreement to supply 100% of its poultry slaughtered at the Dothan plant with AlaTrade, one of our largest customers located in Phenix City, Alabama. Because of the nature of the arrangement, Wayne Farms will no longer have need for the deboning lines in Dothan, and will discontinue this process.
The cessation of deboning processing will not involve the entire facility, and does not affect our hatchery or live operations as we will continue to raise and process approximately the same volume of birds as we do today. Approximately 560 employees will be impacted by this layoff which will be completed by June 8.
"In the challenging business environment we’re in today, this agreement with AlaTrade gives our Dothan facility the ongoing production stability that allows us to be competitive in the market. But this also forces us to make the difficult decision to eliminate deboning lines that we no longer need,” said Clint Rivers, Vice President and General Manager of Wayne Farms Fresh Production Business Unit. "We’ve made a large investment in the facility here and in order to maximize that investment for the long term, we look for long-term agreements with business partners,” said Rivers. “Overall it was a business decision for the long haul. Our facility will continue to run, our local farmers and suppliers won't be impacted, and we can help our employees find opportunities in this field or other fields.”
Where possible, Wayne Farms will work to offer employment opportunities at other Wayne Farms’ locations. Wayne Farms will also collaborate with local employment service agencies to coordinate job placement assistance to those affected employees.