SOUTH CAROLINA - North American lumber giant Georgia-Pacific will shut down production at two wood product plants in South Carolina.
Citing poor conditions in the home building industry, the company said it will end production at its McCormick and Allendale plants 60 days from now. Both plants will remain idle should market conditions improve enough to warrant a production resume.
All 240 employees will be laid off. The company said it will hold job fairs to help displaced workers find new employment.
“Although new-home construction demand has returned somewhat since the recession in 2007/2008, it has not returned to pre-recession levels,” said Satrick Anthony, Georgia-Pacific’s vice president for building products operations. Anthony added that the company has "done everything to make the sites profitable."
This isn't the first bit of bad news for Georgia-Pacific recently. In June, it laid off 650 workers in Arkansas and shut down two plants. In April, the company shut down an Oregon plant - laying off 111 - and in February, shut down a Georgia plant - laying off 120. To make things worse, a May fire completely gutted a separate Georgia plant.
Despite hardships, investments are in place elsewhere. The company is investing up to $70 million to upgrade its plywood and lumber operations in Gurdon, Arkansas. The upgrades in technology and systems will help sustain the more than 700 jobs at the two facilities. The company has invested more than $645 million in the past five years in its operations across Arkansas.
Based in Atlanta, Georgia-Pacific and its subsidiaries manufacture and market building products and related chemicals, paper-based packaging, cellulose, specialty fibers, nonwoven fabrics, and consumer products, including bath tissue, paper towels, napkins, and tableware. The company operates more than 180 facilities and employs more than 30,000 people directly and creates approximately 89,000 jobs indirectly.
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