ST-HYACINTHE, QC – The management of Olymel L.P. is announcing its decision to cease operations at its Vanier plant in Québec City and to offer a compensation and relocation program for all 47 employees affected by this closure. The decision will come into effect on May 10, according to the provisions of the Act respecting labour standards. The employees represented by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) Local 501 were all informed of this earlier today during a meeting, as well as through a personalized letter. Olymel is also announcing that the Vanier plant’s activities, such as the production of cretons, bologna, pepperoni and spaghetti sauce will now be carried out at its Blainville plant, north of Montréal, which will require an additional investment of $2 millionand will create 30 jobs.
COMPENSATION AND POSSIBILITY OF MAINTAINING EMPLOYMENT
Olymel will pay severance benefits to each employee affected by the closure of the Vanier plant according to the employment contract. The compensation amounts are calculated on the basis of each employee’s years of service.
In addition to this compensation, all employees will be offered a new job at the Olymel pork processing plant in St-Henri-de-Lévis, on the South Shore of Québec City, whose operations are very similar to those of the Vanier plant. Employees at the Vanier plant who choose to relocate will also benefit from the employer’s offer to recognize their years of service with respect to salaries and benefits. As a result, these employees can continue to progress within the company while enjoying the benefits of their seniority in their new work environment to the degree that is allowable by the Saint-Henri-de-Lévis plant’s official union.
Olymel will also set up a re-employment committee to help employees who choose to move to another sector or to undergo training in another area. Olymel also intends to facilitate the transition of people who wish to be relocated to its plant in St-Henri-de-Lévis by providing shuttles for their transportation from Québec City. The company will soon be organizing a guided tour of its Saint-Henri-de-Lévis facility specifically for the 47 employees of the Vanier plant.
“Olymel’s management made the difficult decision to close the Vanier plant in the general interest of the company. In all the scenarios considered, the costs of modernizing the Vanier plant would not have allowed us to achieve profitability. This decision will enable us to strengthen our production centres for the future, to invest in achieving even more efficiency, and even to create new jobs, as will be the case in Blainville. I want to thank all the employees of the Vanier plant for their work over the years. I asked that measures be taken to recognize their years of service and relocate them to one of our other facilities, and I hope that everyone will choose to stay with Olymel,” says Réjean Nadeau, President and CEO of Olymel.
Olymel acquired Triomphe Foods in June 2018, in a transaction that included three plants located in Blainville and Lavalin the Montréal area and in Vanier in Québec City. Following this transaction, Olymel has conducted a thorough review of the potential synergies of all three of these facilities and concluded that given the old age of the Vanier plant, the redeployment of the facility’s manufacturing activities was necessary. This decision will foster efficiency gains, economies of scale, and increased production capacity, while also eliminating overlap.
Olymel L.P. is Canada’s leader in the production, processing and distribution of pork and poultry meats. The company has made feeding the world its mission, which it pursues passionately with products of impeccable quality. The company employs over 13,000 people and has production and processing facilities in Quebec, Ontario, Alberta, New Brunswick and Saskatchewan. Olymel exports nearly a third of its total sales. Its annual sales are on the order of $3.5 billion. The company markets its products mainly under the Olymel, Lafleur and Flamingo brands. For more information about the company, visit: www.olymel.ca