CAMBRIA, Wis. – While the closure of the Del Monte grain packing plant may have been devastating in Cambria, Village President Glen Williams said the sale to a new buyer should not have too much of an impact.  Del Monte Foods will close one facility in Mendota, Illinois, and another in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota, parent company Del Monte Pacific Ltd. announced Tuesday. It will sell its Cambria plant at the end of the grain packing season.
In a village of around 770 people, Williams estimates hundreds of seasonal workers working at the Del Monte plant, along with dozens of full-time workers.  "It's a small community," Williams said. It's just amazing. Everybody knows everybody. "
When you know everyone, news travels fast.
" It's nice to know when things are happening, good or bad, it's nice to have a community to share with, "Williams said.
for the Del Monte plant to close Williams, he said he is happy to share good news.
"For the last couple of years, we have been worried that it might happen. If they were to shut down and go away and jobs disappear, it would be a big hit for the community, "he said." Finding out that they are selling to a company that wants to keep going is an amazing, wonderful thing. "
Williams does not know which company is buying the facility, and a Del Monte representative was also unable to share it, but Williams said he was assured the buyer would keep the current employees of Del Monte and continue similar businesses instead of closing.
"You have the trucking companies working with the factory, all those people would (have been) without work. Actual seasonal workers, full-time workers and the tax base would (have) been affected, "Williams said." That would have been a huge impact, so we are very pleased to hear that the new company plans to keep it open. "
Del Monte has owned the facility for about 20 years according to the village website, but it has been in some capacity for almost a century.
" My father, myself, my brother all worked there to pay to go to college, "Williams said." Many full-time workers have been employed over the years, and have been a fantastic member of our community.
A Del Monte representative said that current employees at the facility would be eligible for severance pay if they so desired.
According to the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, no dismissal notice has been received from Del Monte about the Cambria facility.
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