USA- Mexican bakery giant Grupo Bimbo has revealed its plans to shut down its baking plant in Albuquerque, New Mexico, marking the closure of its only facility in the state. 

The decision, which will take effect by April, is set to affect 149 employees.

In an official statement, Bimbo Bakeries USA (BBU), the US division of Grupo Bimbo, cited “volume loss” and the aging infrastructure of the Albuquerque plant as reasons behind the closure, stating that the facility was inconducive to the company’s growth plans.

While the company intends to shift production to other bakeries within its manufacturing network, specific details regarding which sites will take over production were not disclosed at the time of writing.

Jessica Santiago, the regional director of operations at BBU, acknowledged the difficulty of the decision, expressing appreciation for the dedicated team of associates at the Albuquerque Bakery. She assured that the company values and respects its associates and will provide assistance where possible.

Grupo Bimbo operates 59 bakeries across the US, with approximately 20,000 associates and over 700 sales centers. Some of its well-known brands include Thomas Breads, Sara Lee, and Lender’s Bagels.

Conversely, this closure of the Albuquerque bakery comes after Grupo Bimbo acquired Mile Hi Bakery, a smaller US peer known for supplying “buns and English muffins for the QSR channel.” 

The company also announced plans in 2022 to build two new factories in different US states, with the projects expected to create over 600 jobs.

Additionally, in Argentina, Grupo Bimbo inaugurated a new US$100m production line for bread in September 2023, which is its largest investment in Argentina since entering the country almost three decades ago.

In a recent development, Grupo Bimbo is also planning to close a manufacturing facility in Spain, as confirmed by the Spanish trade union CCOO. The El Verger factory, situated near Alicante, currently employs 90 people.

Grupo Bimbo’s decision to close the Albuquerque plant is part of its ongoing efforts to streamline operations and adapt to market dynamics, although it comes with the unfortunate consequence of job losses for the affected employees.

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