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Central Okanagan  

30 people out of work as plant closes

Jennifer Zielinski

Ashland Performance Materials situated in Lake Country is shutting its doors, putting 30 people out of work. 

The company has announced that they are 'realigning their composites manufacturing base in North America.'

Meaning that the company is closing the unsaturated polyester resin and gelcoats facility in Kelowna, British Columbia, as of this June 27, 2014. 

The company claims several factors contributed to the decision, including the downturn in the economy, the closure of several composites customers in the Northwest, and the closing of the rail spur to Kelowna last summer.

“Decisions like this are always difficult, particularly when they involve a facility with a long history of serving customers,” said Ted Harris, president of Ashland Performance Materials. 

“But this realignment will allow us to operate more efficiently and better position Ashland to continue serving the needs of our North American composites customers going forward.” 

Ashland will continue to manufacture UPR and gelcoats at the company’s six remaining manufacturing facilities in North America.

The company recently completed significant capital investments in four of the six facilities to enhance capabilities and enable more efficient service throughout North America.

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