Saturday, April 27, 2002

Louisville plant to close

The Associated Press

        LOUISVILLE — The Fischer Packing Co. plant in Louisville will close and most of its work will be moved to the Field Packing Co. facility in Owensboro, their parent company announced Friday.

        The operation is almost 100 years old. Founder Henry Fischer began making hand-ground sausage in 1904.

        Parent company SMG Inc. told the plant's 225 production and supervisory employees Friday that it was eliminating their jobs. A few dozen sales and office jobs will remain in Louisville, but not at the Mellwood Avenue location.

        The Louisville and Owensboro plants have both been operating well below capacity, with only one shift a day, Sam Wise, vice president in charge of SMG's Kentucky operations, told the Courier-Journal.

        The Owensboro facility was chosen to consolidate operations because its previous owners had remodeled it, adding 100,000 square feet of modern production, he said.

        SMG will open a separate distribution center in Louisville. It now handles distribution out of the Mellwood plant.

        SMG, which has its corporate offices in Crestview Hills, will offer jobs at its other plants to its Louisville workers, Mr. Wise said. He expects as many as 100 new jobs to open eventually at the Owensboro plant.


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