2013 plant closure roundup

Canada's jobs record in 2013 wasn't pretty.

Between November 2012 and November 2013, all of the net new jobs created in Canada were in the lowest paid and most insecure occupational group: sales and service jobs.

There were just 172,400 new jobs created over this period. But sales and service employment rose by 191,700. These jobs pay an average of just $16.50 per hour, giving the lie to the Harper government's claim that our economy is doing just fine.

Manufacturing workers, with good middle-class wages, know better. That's because too many of them lost their job in 2013 or found out their plant would be shutting down soon.

Here's a sampling of the bad news:

January

Vertis Communications closed its printing plant in Fort Erie, ON; 100 jobs lost.

March

P. Janes and Sons closed three seafood processing plants in Newfoundland; 300 jobs lost.

June

Southwire Canada closed its wire plant in Stouffville, ON; 150 jobs lost.

July

A.O. Smith shut down its water heater plant in Fergus, ON; 256 jobs lost. Graphic Packaging closed its plastic packaging plant in Brampton, ON; 150 jobs lost.

August

Mondelez Canada closed the Mr. Christie cookie plant in west-end Toronto; 550 jobs lost.

September

The Old Dutch potato chip factory closed in Lachine, QC; 216 jobs lost.

November

The Rio Tinto Alcan smelter closed in Shawinigan, QC; 425 jobs lost.

December

U.S. Steel closed for good its idled iron and steelmaking operations in Hamilton, ON; 47 jobs lost.

Closures coming

  • Heinz to close its plant in Leamington, ON, in June 2014; 740 jobs lost.
  • Kellogg is shutting down its cereal factory in London, ON, by the end of 2014; 500 jobs lost.
  • Electrolux is slated to close its plant in l'Assomption, QC, by the end of 2014, after beginning to transfer production to a U.S. facility in mid-2012; about 1,300 jobs lost.


Photo: Carrie Sloan. Used under a Creative Commons BY 2.0 licence.