According to Dean Foods Company representative Liliana Esposito, last week Dean Foods Company announced that it would close its Baxley processing plant and move production to other facilities in its national network. Production at the facility, which supports the company’s PET Dairy brand, will be phased out over the next two months, with final closure expected by the end of March.
Approximately 60 positions will be eliminated. The closure is part of the company’s effort to dramatically reduce costs and improve efficiency throughout its supply chain.
“The decision to eliminate jobs or close locations is never easy and does not reflect the quality of work performed by the employees in Baxley,” stated Esposito.
The plant, which opened in 2003, produces fluid milk and other beverages under the PET brand as well as various private label brands. Dean will continue to support these products at other facilities in the region.
The 60 positions are believed to be plant specific jobs and do not take into account additional jobs created by the plant such as in the trucking industry. The plant utilizes area trucking companies to haul milk in and out of the facility and it is unknown at this point the impact the closure will have on this industry.
If there is any positive news about this situation it is that Esposito told The Baxley News-Banner that Dean Foods does plan to offer the property up for sale. Now let’s all just hope and pray that there is a buyer out there shopping for a facility such as this plant.