Ardent Mills will soon close four U.S. flour mills, including one in Minnesota, citing an oversupply in its operations.
The Denver-based company, a joint venture of Cargill, Conagra and CHS Inc., said it has too many facilities for its current and future demand expectations, adding that the closures will "enhance the efficiency of the Ardent Mills network."
"These decisions are difficult, especially because of the impact on our valued team members. However, this is a critical step to put greater focus and investment on the rest of our plants," Dan Dye, chief executive of Ardent Mills, said in a statement issued Friday.
The company said it decided to close these plants due to a regional supply imbalance. "We completed a thorough review of all plants and conducted extensive analysis around regional demand, and how our facilities lined up with supporting our customers," Dye said in a statement to the Star Tribune.
Ardent Mills is shuttering facilities in Georgia, Ohio and Pennsylvania next month and the Rush City mill, which employs 34 people, early next year.
The company is headquartered in Colorado, but has more operations in Minnesota than any other state. Other than Rush City, the company has mills in Hastings, Mankato and Lake City and a satellite office in Plymouth. Conagra and Minnetonka-based Cargill each own 44% of Ardent Mills while CHS, based in Inver Grove Heights, controls the remaining 12%.
Following the closures, Ardent Mills will operate 35 flour mills in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.