With the continuing economic woes of Brazil affecting even the most powerful corporations, global meat player BRF has announced plans to gradually wind down two of its poultry factories in Lajeado and Jataí.
From 30 June, the 550 staff at the Jataí chicken processing plant will be forced to leave the factory as it is temporarily deactivated to allow BRF to undertake maintenance work.
No date has been set to reopen the plant.
Staff will not necessarily be out of work: employees may be transferred to other factories if vacancies and relevant positions are available. However, it is likely to cause disruption to families of staff employed at the plant. BRF said it will provide assistance to employees who are able to secure a transfer to another site.
BRF does run a number of different sites in the city. Its animal feed plant, hatchery and farms will all continue to operate and may be able to accommodate some of the 550 workforce.
BRF’s plant in Lajeado will also be temporarily shut, a process expected to be complete by 31 July. All 3,000 staff will be forced on vacation – it’s unclear if this will be paid or unpaid – until the plant reopens in August.
A company spokesman said the decision to shut both plants stems from a plan last year to “reassess and optimise” BRF’s facilities in its native Brazil. “It also takes into account the challenging economic environment currently faced by our country and our industry,” said the spokesman.
The spokesman also said the company “believes in the potential” of both plants, but soaring inflation and national debt has put pressure on the company.