Pepperidge Farm closing Aiken bakery

Pepperidge Farm Inc. is closing its bakery operations in Aiken, putting 115 employees out of work.

The company announced Thurs­day it is consolidating operations and plans to shift the majority of the bread made in its Aiken facility to Lakeland, Fla.

“We recently reviewed our operations and identified excess capacity in our bakery network,” said Bill Livingstone, the senior vice president of supply chain and operations, in a news release. “We made the difficult decision to close our plant in Aiken. It is a very good bakery with great people, but it has limited production capabilities, and we’ve recently discontinued a product that accounted for a significant amount of its volume.”

The bakery produced Pepperidge Farm Italian, Farmhouse, Rye and Deli Flats breads.

Goldfish Flats Bread were made at the facility before the product was discontinued from the retail market.

The facility will close in phases, starting in September. The bakery will stop operating in March.

The Aiken bakery, at 10 Wind­ham Blvd. in Verenes Industrial Park, opened in 1976. Pepperidge Farm operates eight other bakeries across the nation, employing more than 4,000 people.

The company, based in Norwalk, Conn., will offer employees severance packages.

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