Springdale, Arkansas-based Tyson Foods announced earlier this month that it will not rebuild its fire-damaged poultry plant in Heflin, Alabama.

Company officials said in a news release that Tyson will consider other options, such as expanding an existing plant or building a new plant at or near another Tyson location in the state.

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“It’s difficult for us to leave Heflin, especially given the tremendous support we’ve received from the community over the years,” said Bill Lovette, senior group vice president of Poultry and Prepared Foods for Tyson, in the company news release. “However, we’ve concluded some of our other plant locations are better suited for the possible construction of a new plant or a plant expansion, should we decide to proceed with such a project. We hope to make a final decision in the first half of calendar 2007.”
The Heflin facility has been closed since September, 2006, when the production area was extensively damaged by fire. 

The plant employed 267 people. Shortly after the fire, Tyson said all the Heflin employees had been offered jobs at other facilities in the area.