The Country Fresh dairy plant in Flint, Mich., which dates to 1929, will cease production in mid-August, affecting 110 employees and some of its 68 drivers, said Marguerite Copel, a spokeswoman for Dallas-based Dean Foods Co., the parent company of Country Fresh.

"The reality is that we just have too many plants producing product in that particular area," Copel said. "We needed to put production in other plants."

Copel went on to explain that production of milk, flavoured milk, ice cream mix and orange juice will shift to Country Fresh plants in Livonia and Grand Rapids, and there are open positions at both plants and across the company that employees can check out.

"It was a very difficult decision but one we had to make," Copel said.

Dean Foods has also announced that it will shutter a plant in Lincoln, Neb., in September.

The dairy industry has been consolidating for the past 10-15 years, said Jim Dudlicek, chief editor of Dairy Foods. “Dean Foods is the largest dairy processor in the country. Now with the economy being what it is, they're looking to eliminate any unnecessary operations to do as much as they can at particular locations," he said.

Country Fresh acquired the factory in the mid-1980s. The plant previously operated as McDonald Dairy.

Source: The Flint Journal