UPDATE: JUNE 4, 2019 LAYOFFS AND CLOSURES IN CROSSETT, ARKANSAS, HOPE ARKANSAS, AND MONROEVILLE, ALABAMA.
In a company statement, “Georgia-Pacific announced today that it is shutting down the equipment and processes supporting the bleached board operations at its Crossett, Arkansas, facility as of October 2019. This decision was based on an assessment of the mill’s ability to compete effectively in the bleached board market. “
“As a result, the company will permanently shut down the bleached board machines, as well as the extrusion plant, woodyard, pulp mill and a significant portion of the energy complex at the Crossett mill. The company also in July will shut down one of the mill’s older tissue machines that doesn’t support the long-term competitiveness of the tissue business.”
“Approximately 530 jobs at the facility will ultimately be impacted by these closures. About 25 business and sales jobs also will be affected by this decision.”
In addition, the company announced today that it will close two particleboard facilities in Hope, Arkansas, and Monroeville, Alabama, over the next couple months and will not rebuild its Thomson, Georgia, facility, which experienced a catastrophic fire last week. Approximately 100 employees at each facility will be impacted. Georgia-Pacific’s particleboard production in Diboll, Texas, will remain in operation.”
UPDATE: APRIL 12, 2019 COOS BAY, OREGON LUMBER MILL TO CLOSE
The company has announced the closure of its Coos Bay, Oregon lumber and lay off 111 employees.
The decision was driven by Asian competition for logs harvested in Oregon and a logistics burden imposed by the closure of the Coos Bay swing railroad bridge.
A company spokesman noted, “It is an absolutely terrible thing to have to do. At the same time you can’t keep operating if you’re losing money at the site.”
UPDATE: JANUARY 11, 2019 ANOTHER PAPER MILL, ANOTHER 700 EMPLOYEES
According to a spokesperson, Georgia-Pacific will be closing its Port Hudson, Louisiana facility and laying off approximately 700 workers. The company will permanently shut down all paper machines, as well as its wood yard and pulp mill. The decision was driven by a decline in the copy paper market as companies reduce their copying and activities in favor of electronic files. The company has said that they will be leaving the “communications paper business.”
Up to 300 employees will lose their jobs as paper manufacturer Georgia-Pacific reduces operations of its Camas, Washington mill. The cause of the downsizing is being disputed.
The company cites reduced demand for its office paper in the face of increasing computerization and the employees union, the Association of Western Pulp and Paper Workers, claims that demand remains high, but lower-cost imports from Asia are the real reason. It should come as no surprise that the paper industry is struggling and there is a spate of plant closures, downsizings, and employee layoffs.
“Georgia-Pacific is one of the world's leading makers of tissue, pulp, paper, packaging, building products and related chemicals. If you’re a consumer, you may recognize our household brands, such as Brawny® paper towels, Quilted Northern® bath tissue and Dixie® cups and tableware.”
The mill, established in 1885, has seen employees reduced from approximately 2,400 in the 80s to about 120-140 after this round of layoffs. Georgia-Pacific is a subsidiary of Koch Industries. Georgia-Pacific’s tagline, “Great Products Made By Great People” appears to have been restructured into “Great Products Made By Fewer People.”
Change is coming. There will always be a tomorrow, no matter how much you may try to ignore it. There are no guarantees in life, or promises for a bright future. Just because something bad hasn't happened yet, doesn't mean it won't. It can happen to anyone, anytime, anywhere ... are you now wondering, Am I Next?