MeadWestvaco Shutting Consumer Products Plant

Commercial printing firm MeadWestvaco Corp. will close its consumer and office products facility in Front Royal, VA, affecting about 160 employees, the company said yesterday.

The plant will close in mid-August, MeadWestvaco said. Equipment will be moved to other MeadWestvaco facilities in North America.

The plant produced school and office products, including spiral-bound notebooks and envelopes. The company said it planned to continue manufacturing these products.

Closure of the plant will result in a $7 million restructuring cost, but the company expects a subsequent beneficial effect on its earnings. The company is closing the plant to strengthen its competitive position, MeadWestvaco said.

In March, MeadWestvaco announced the shutdown of four coated-paper machines at two plants in Ohio and Maryland, resulting in the layoff of 425 workers. The company said it expected to cut a total of 900 jobs in 2002.

MeadWestvaco was formed from the merger of The Mead Corp. and Westvaco Corp. The job cuts have been part of the company's effort to consolidate after the merger.

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