Unilever announced that it will be closing its manufacturing plant in Framingham, Mass.

“Unilever continually looks for ways to achieve greater efficiencies across our Supply Chain network,” said Steve Rosemary, director of manufacturing, Unilever Ice Cream. “After a long and careful analysis, we have determined that greater efficiencies can be achieved by shifting production to other company plants in the United States. This decision was a difficult one and in no way reflects the dedication or performance of our Framingham colleagues.”

Production from Framingham – which manufactures Breyers packaged ice cream – will be transferred to other sites within the Unilever network in several phases, beginning in mid-year 2010. Plant production is expected to finish no later than the second half of 2010, with the final plant closing expected to occur during that same time period.

The decision to close the plant will affect 201 salaried and hourly employees.