Sargento Foods will begin Bellingham layoffs in May

Sargento Foods Inc. plans to begin layoffs on May 3 for at least 34 employees at its soon-to-close facility on Bellingham’s waterfront, according to a notice filed with the Washington State Employment Security Department.

The company announced the closure of its 65,000-square-foot Bellingham facility late last month. Operations at the facility are expected to end within the next 9-16 months, and a final closing date should be announced later this spring, according to Sargento.

Ultimately, up to 54 local jobs are expected to be lost through the closure.

Sargento has said the decision to close the facility was due to several factors, one being the Bellingham plant’s primary customer not renewing its contract with Sargento, which expires at the end of the year. The company said it has developed a transition and training program to help its employees find other work in the Bellingham area.

Sargento was founded in 1953. Its headquarters are in Plymouth, Wis. The food producer is best known for its line of packaged cheeses.

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