Box Company to Pack Up and Leave

Box manufacturer to layoff close to 100 employees

Smurfit-Stone Container Corp., a Missouri-based company, is planning to close its box manufacturing plant in Portland, leaving 93 people unemployed.

The plant is expected to close in September. Nearly all of the 23 salaried and 70 hourly employees will be laid off, a company spokesperson told the Hartford Courant.

Smurfit-Stone's containers are used for packaging home appliances, electric motors, small machinery, groceries, produce, books, pizza and other goods.

Lisa A. Esneault, director for corporate communications and public affairs, told the Middletown Press that the company decided to close the facility to “streamline operations for market competitiveness.”

The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January. It has been in a continuous downward spiral since 2005.  Smurfit has shut down many facilities and cut more than 6,500 jobs nationwide since that time. It is the town's fifth largest taxpayer and pays more than $78,000 in real estate taxes and $19,000 in personal property taxes, the Press reports.

This is not the first Smurfit plant in Connecticut to close. In 2000, the company closed a 150-employee factory in Torrington.

The work done at the Portland plant will be transferred north to a Mansfield, Mass. operation, the spokesperson told the Courant.

Workers will receive severance packages.

Contact Us