Ozark Mountain Poultry (OMP) plans to consolidate its front-half deboning operations, and as a result, the company closed its plant in Warren, Arkansas. The plant closure was made effective on April 7.
The workload carried out in Warren will be consolidated into its new facility in Batesville, Arkansas.
The decision to close the plant in Warren will affect about 200 employees. OMP opened the facility in Warren in October 2014.
According to Ed Fryar, CEO of OMP, a combination of factors contributed to the decision, including the available space in the new Batesville, facility, and a desire to reduce the company’s footprint to provide greater efficiencies.
“Consolidation allows us to create greater value for our customers and to simultaneously reduce our carbon footprint. Also, the new facility in Batesville was an unknown at the time we began operations in Warren,” said Fryar. “This was a very difficult decision to make. The quality of the available work force in Warren was very good for us, and we are very appreciative of our Warren-based employees.”
Company to help workers find new employment opportunities
Despite the closing of the Warren plant, OMP’s overall operations continue to grow. Fryar said about 400 people will be hired as a result of the expansion in the Batesville area, and he encourages workers whose jobs in Warren are being eliminated to apply for jobs within the company at its facilities in Batesville and Rogers, Arkansas. Fryar added that the company will also help affected workers find other employment opportunities in the Warren area.
OMP, according to the WATTAgNet Top Poultry Companies Database, slaughtered 700,000 chickens on a weekly basis in 2015. It processes premium chicken for the restaurant industry and its products are also available in the U.S. retail sector through its consumer-based brand, Forester Farmer's Market.