Ross to Cut Several Hundred Jobs

The Associated Press

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May 20, 2005

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ross Products, which makes popular baby formulas Similac and Isomil and adult nutritional bars, plans to cut several hundred jobs by the end of September, the company announced Friday.

A company spokeswoman declined to give an exact number of layoffs.

Most of the layoffs will be at its Columbus-based laboratory, factory and distribution center. Ross employs 2,300 here.

There also will be reductions in Ross' other factories in Altavista, Va.; Sturgis, Mich.; Casa Grande, Ariz.; and Fairfield, Calif.

The layoffs are part of a broader plan to consolidate the company's manufacturing operations, spokeswoman Carolyn Valek said.

"We need to make our products cheaper and deliver them faster," Valek said.

Ross is best known for its Similac and Isomil baby formulas. It also makes adult nutritional drinks and snack bars, including Body-for-Life and Myoplex.

Ross was founded in 1903 in Columbus as the Moores and Ross Milk Co. It merged with North Chicago, Ill.-based Abbott Laboratories in 1964 and remains a subsidiary of Abbott.

Ross was spared in October 2002 when Abbott announced it would cut 2,000 jobs and close 10 plants.


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