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Cavendish Farms to reduce production

NEW ANNAN, P.E.I. -- Cavendish Farms, P.E.I's largest private-sector employer, will stop production for two weeks because of the faltering U.S. economy.

NEW ANNAN, P.E.I. -- Cavendish Farms, P.E.I's largest private-sector employer, will stop production for two weeks because of the faltering U.S. economy.

The New Annan-based company said Thursday it will shut down its two processing plants on the Island and another in Jamestown, N.D., from Nov. 20-27 and Dec. 23-Jan. 2.

But Mary Keith, a spokeswoman for Cavendish Farms, said that's only the beginning.

The company, which produces frozen potato products for global export, plans to shut down for at least one full week every two months all next year unless market conditions improve.

"Obviously, we remain hopeful that our efforts to secure new business and an improve-ment in the economy will result in an increase in production," she said in an interview.

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Cavendish Farms is the world's fourth-largest processor of frozen potato products and supplies grocery, food service and restaurants around the world.

Keith said a nearly 10 per cent unemployment rate in the U.S. has resulted in a drop in the consumption of French fries, primarily at fast food restaurants.

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