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Mill faces week-long shutdown

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Due to poor market conditions for both kraft and paper products, all production at AbitibiBowater’s Fort Frances operations will be shut down for one week, starting Sunday, Nov. 23, the company reported this morning.

Operations will resume Sunday, Nov. 30.

“We need to take a week out just because we don’t have the orders to sustain the operation for that week,” mill manager John Harrison said this morning.

He noted the decision was made “very recently,” and that the public announcement was made shortly after management met this morning with union reps, who, in turn, are talking with their members.

Harrison said he’s been given no indication there will be any more shutdowns here in the near future, and wouldn’t speculate on the matter.

But he did say AbitibiBowater has been taking similar downtime at some of its other operations producing pulp, newsprint, and specialty grades.

Harrison did note, however, that this is the first time he recalls a shutdown like this in the five years since he’s been back here.

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