Kraft to close cheese plant in Arkansas

by Eric Schroeder
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NORTHFIELD, ILL. — Kraft Foods Group, Inc. said it plans to close its Bentonville, Ark., ingredient cheese facility in the second quarter of 2013. The 65,000-square-foot plant has been open since 1947 and employs 60 workers.

“After careful analysis and review, we identified some opportunities to combine production, gain efficiencies and reduce expenses in our Cheese & Dairy network,” said Jim Durkin, vice-president of operations for Kraft’s Cheese & Dairy business unit. “We’ll achieve greater efficiencies of scale by combining the majority of the plant’s production with external partners. Bentonville is a smaller plant and its size isn’t suitable for the scale the company needs going forward.

“This is not a reflection on our employees in Bentonville. This is a strategic decision that has nothing to do with their performance, which has been excellent. We will be working with our employees to help them through this transition.”

Kraft said it plans to sell the property once production has ended.

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