Food Service & Agriculture, Human Resources, and Manufacturing

Food maker laying off 50 workers

October 11, 2018
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Gerber Grabbers pouch
A Grabbers pouch with a Smart Flow spout. Courtesy Gerber

A food maker with a plant in the region plans to shutter a production line and lay off 50 workers.

Florham Park, New Jersey-based Gerber Products Company, a subsidiary of Vevey, Switzerland-based Nestlé, said yesterday it will decommission its “third foods” production line at 405 State St. in Fremont.

The move will affect about 50 employees, and the company said it is projecting their last day will be Nov. 16.

“Third foods” refers to “meals with small pieces of food that help babies transition to table foods,” according to Gerber.

A Gerber spokesperson said the decision to decommission the line will help make the company “more agile, efficient and innovative” and boost its long-term competitiveness.

“After a full and thorough evaluation, it is clear that consumer preferences are changing and changing quickly. We must be responsive to the needs of parents and caregivers, and this is why we have made the decision to evolve the ‘third foods’ business,” the spokesperson said.

“We are working closely with the union that represents employees at the factory to ensure the process is managed according to our collective bargaining agreement. As always, we will treat our people with fairness and respect and will ensure that each impacted employee is appropriately supported throughout the transition.”

Gerber

Gerber Products Company was founded in 1927 by Daniel Frank Gerber, owner of the Fremont Canning Company.

The company — a subsidiary of Nestlé Group since 2007 — manufactures and markets food and care items for infants and children from birth through age 3.

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