Huntington Breyers Plant Closing It's Doors: Approx. 140 Workers Lose Jobs

By Emma Koch
By Stephanie Parkinson

July 1, 2013 Updated Dec 21, 2013 at 9:01 PM EDT

HUNTINGTON, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) -- The Unilever Breyers Ice Cream Plant is closing its doors and leaving about 140 salaried and hourly workers without jobs.

Officials with Unilever say the plant will close at the end of July, but workers will continue to be paid through August 20.

The official announcement of the closure, from the parent company Unilever, came down the morning of June 21.

"It's a sad day and I'm disappointed that that's how it worked out," said Mayor Brooks Fetters, City of Huntington.

Officials with Unilever say the reason for shutting the doors in Huntington is consolidation, because they have extra space at their other U.S. ice cream plants.

"It's going to be hard. I hope the community can, you know step in and help," said Donna Waters, husband works at the plant.

Donna's husband has worked at the plant for 40 years. She says he was very close to retirement.

"I was hoping it would last until he would retire, he's 60 now and hopefully, hopefully we can still you know get by until he retires," said Waters.

The Mayor of Huntington hoped this would never happen but he says over the years Unilever has come to him with concerns.

"We've done everything that we know how to do, to work with them, in dealing with issues that they brought to us from time to time," said Mayor Fetters.

The union president says he is working on negotiations with Unilever.

"We asked the company to follow the collective bargaining agreement right up to the day that the last union employee walks out the door," said Dave Altman, President, RWSDU Local 835.

Altman says the employees do have a severance package that is part of their bargaining agreement. But he said he couldn't go into the details of that at this time.

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