Posted: Jan 31, 2013 8:37 AM by Melissa Anderson - MTN News
More than 100 employees at Montana's two Associated Food Stores warehouses were told they will have to start looking for another job this spring.
The warehouses in Helena and Billings are scheduled to stop operations on April 14th.
The wholesale food operations will consolidate its services and ship food from their distribution center in Utah in order to be more competitive with national chains; only 10 employees will be left in the Helena center.
Kelly Atkins, senior vice-president of Montana operations, said, "We are going to unfortunately reduce our number of employees here by 50. Fifty less here and 56 less in the Billings division. We will however be keeping about 25 of our team, some of them being retail support and some of them will be drivers so we are still going to have a presence in the state."
Atkins says the decision will ultimately allow its stores to continue to compete against bigger "box" stores.
Associated Food services nearly 500 small grocers throughout several western states including Montana.