Cargill to outsource transportation at Canadian beef plant

Wed Nov 21, 2012 2:59pm EST

* Decision made to control rising costs

* 50 workers lose jobs; Alberta plant not impacted

WINNIPEG, Manitoba Nov 21 (Reuters) - Cargill Ltd said on Wednesday that it will hire an outside company to handle transportation of the beef it produces at Guelph, Ontario, one of its two big Canadian beef-packing plants.

The decision will help Cargill deal with escalating transportation costs in the highly competitive eastern Canadian retail market, the company said in a statement.

Spokeswoman Brigitte Burgoyne said the move affects transportation within three to four hours of Toronto. International freight is already handled outside the company.

About 50 unionized and non-union employees will lose their jobs with Cargill.

The change does not affect Cargill's beef plant at High River, Alberta, which competes with the XL Foods plant at Brooks, Alberta, managed by JBS USA Holdings Inc.

Cargill is based in Minnesota and has its Canadian headquarters in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

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