Caroline County Economic Development

Response to Kraft Plant Closing

Yesterday, we received word that the Kraft plant in Federalsburg will be closing within the next 12 – 24 months.  This is certainly very disappointing news.  The plant has been part of Federalsburg and Caroline County for decades, and we’ve always been proud to be the home of Stove Top Stuffing.

The decision to close the plant is a result of the recent merger between Kraft Foods and the Heinz Company.  Whenever a merger like this takes place, there is risk that it will impact local facilities.  Since the merger was announced several months ago, we have been in contact with the Federalsburg plant and have been monitoring the situation.  It appeared that the Federalsburg facility may come through the merger unscathed.  The company was adding jobs at the plant and doing some minor renovations to the facility.

Unfortunately, Kraft Heinz Company has initiated a new round of consolidations, and the Federalsburg plant is part of that.  Companies merge because they see opportunities to streamline their operations and improve efficiency.  This is a good move for shareholders, but it often has a very negative impact for individual plants and the people who work there.

So what’s next?  We are working with the Maryland Department of Commerce to reach out to corporate executives at the Kraft Heinz Company to see if there is anything at all that can be done to keep the Federalsburg plant open.  We’re also working with the Upper Shore Workforce Investment Board to help the affected local employees find new jobs in the area.  Fortunately, our other manufacturing companies in Caroline County are growing and adding jobs.  Dart Container alone is currently hiring 50 production employees.  Smaller manufacturers are also adding jobs, like Shoreline Vinyl Systems, which is currently adding five new production positions.  These are just a couple of examples that indicate there are good opportunities for Kraft employees to find new jobs in the area.

Our hearts are with our fellow citizens who are directly impacted by this decision made by Kraft Heinz Company.  We’ll do everything we can to help them through the transition.  We take care of each other here in Caroline County, and we’ll do our absolute best to ensure that the local employees find new opportunities right here at home.

If you have questions about the plant closing or would like to know more about the response by Caroline Economic Development Corporation, please contact us at 410.479.4188.

— Angela Visintainer, Director

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