It won’t be business as usual, but if a newly-signed deal goes through, there may be at least some business happening at the Leamington tomato processing plant going forward. A group of investors, Highbury Canco Corporation, has a signed letter of intent with H.J. Heinz Company that will see the consortium take over the plant. Heinz will contract the plant to continue creating and distributing certain products for the company, but would be just one of the customers of the plant, the group says.
Read the back story: Heinz to close Leamington tomato processing facility
A letter of intent is not a done deal, however the potential of the deal is great news for Heinz plant employees and the town of Leamington, as the June closure of the plant will see at least 800 jobs lost. The purchase by Highbury would keep about 250 employees from losing their jobs, and will need additional workforce seasonally, the company said.
The Heinz plant at Leamington uses up to 40% of the processing tomatoes in the area — if the plant is shuttered, the loss for farmers in the area would be devastating.