Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Campbell Soup is closing Toronto plant

Campbell Soup is closing its plant in Toronto, throwing 380 people out of work.

The closure will come gradually over the next 18 months as the company shifts production to plants in the United States. Those plants will not be adding any production because the company says soup sales are declining.

The closure will hit farmers who grow vegetables for processing. They have seen a lot of other plants close or reduce production, including Heinz tomato ketchup, Jema in Leamington, Smucker's in Dunnville and Strub's Pickles in Brantford.

Suzanne van Bommel, chair of the Ontario Processing Vegetable Growers marketing board, said the plant is a big buyer of Ontario crops, and its loss would be a "big hit" for farmers.

Campbell Soup buys 4,800 tonnes of carrots from growers in the Holland Marsh region north of Toronto, van Bommel told the Globe and Mail.

Growers have reached contracts for the coming season and hope to do so for 2019, she said.