Food In Canada

Olymel shuts down multiple plants in Ontario, Quebec

By Food in Canada Staff   

Business Operations Meat &Poultry Editor pick Olymel Ontario Quebec

Olymel closes a few of its plants and increases capacity at its Oakville, Ont., facility.

In Quebec’s fresh pork sector, Olymel closes its boning and packaging plant in Princeville, Centre-du-Québec. More than 300 employees will be affected by this decision. The plant will cease operations on November 10.

Olymel will be rolling out a relocation plan that will allow employees of the Princeville plant to be relocated within the company to plants in the fresh pork sector or to any other facility with labour needs. The Olymel plant in Princeville also has 33 temporary foreign workers on staff. Olymel will work with federal and provincial authorities so those employees can apply for relocation to another Olymel facility.

“Today more than ever, it is necessary to continue to rethink our organization in order to optimize all of our activities. The fresh pork industry is slowly getting back on track after two years of tumult that forced us to reorganize our operations. We explored various avenues for the Princeville plant, but we found that its operations could be handled in our three slaughtering, cutting and boning plants, namely in St-Esprit, in the Lanaudière region, in Yamachiche, in Mauricie and in Ange-Gardien, in Montérégie West. It is with reluctance that we announce the permanent closure of the Princeville factory. This decision, difficult but necessary, is part of Olymel’s desire to continue our efforts to return to profitability in the sector, for the benefit of our entire organization,” said Yanick Gervais, president and CEO of Olymel.


In March 2022, the former pork slaughtering and cutting plant was repurposed, and operations shifted to value-added activities. Olymel will announce its plans for the disposition of Princeville plant facilities and land at a later date.

After careful consideration, and as part of an effort to streamline operations, enhance efficiency, and ensure profitability across all its facilities, Olymel’s management also closes its poultry further processing plant in Paris, Ont. More than 90 employees are affected by this decision and have been given 14 weeks’ notice of closure, with the final date for cessation of operations set for December 22. Employees who wish to stay with Olymel will be given the option to sign up for a relocation program.

The closure of the Paris plant means that its operations will be consolidated with those of the Oakville plant. In the coming weeks, refurbishment work will begin at the Oakville plant, where one of the two production lines currently based in Paris will be installed. The work will require an investment of $8 million and, once completed, will create 62 new jobs, bringing the total number at the plant to 180. The Orenda plant in Brampton, Ont., will also see its activities grow as part of the restructuring, particularly in tumbling.

“With the Paris and Oakville plants both operating in the poultry further processing sector and located a short distance apart, Olymel found itself running two plants that were working below their respective capacities. Consolidating the operations of the two plants in Oakville will put an end to this situation and generate significant gains in efficiency and savings, as well as positive outcomes for the Orenda poultry further processing plant in Brampton and the Sainte-Rosalie plant in Montérégie Est, Quebec,” explained Gervais.

The restructuring in the Ontario poultry sector will also have a positive impact on the activities of Olymel’s poultry further processing plant in Sainte-Rosalie, in the Saint-Hyacinthe region. Essentially, taking equipment from the Paris plant and installing it in Sainte-Rosalie will increase production capacity for certain poultry products and could create additional jobs at the facility, which already employs 500 people.

Finally, Olymel is accelerating the closure of its Saint-Simon distribution centre in Montérégie Est. The centre will close on January 26, more than a year ahead of the planned date. The decision to accelerate the closure was taken due to a decline in the centre’s throughput following the reduction in slaughter volumes, after factoring in the ability of Olymel’s other distribution centres to absorb those volumes.

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