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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

N.Y. Chives Recalled For Possible Listeria Contamination

May 12, 2011 9:04 am

NEW HAMPTON, N.Y. (AP) — Federal food safety authorities say chives distributed in nine states by an upstate New York company are being recalled because of possible Listeria contamination. The Food and Drug Administration says the chives from Goodness Gardens Inc. of New Hampton were sold primarily through retailers in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Alabama, Illinois and Virginia.

Business Inventories Grow For 15th Straight Month

May 12, 2011 8:25 am | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Businesses added to their stockpiles for a 15th straight month in March while their sales rose for a ninth consecutive month, suggesting factory production will remain strong in coming months. The Commerce Department reported Thursday that businesses increased inventories 1 percent in March while sales rose an even larger 2.

Continental Tires Announces 440 New Jobs In Ill.

May 12, 2011 8:23 am

MOUNT VERNON, Ill. (AP) — The maker of Continental and General brand tires says it's investment of $224 million into its southern Illinois plant will mean more than 440 new jobs. Continental Tires the Americas made the announcement at its Mount Vernon factory, saying the full-time jobs will be added over the next three years.

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Mulally: No Chance Of Leaving Ford

May 12, 2011 7:55 am

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. CEO Alan Mulally says hasn't given any thought to stepping down. Mulally's comments came in a brief meeting with reporters after Ford's annual shareholders meeting in Wilmington, Del. The 65-year-old chief executive was hired away from Boeing Co. in 2006 to rescue Ford, which at the time was struggling near the brink of bankruptcy.

Saab In Peril As Emergency Chinese Investment Terminated

May 12, 2011 7:52 am | by Malin Rising, Associated Press

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Struggling car maker Saab Automobile faced renewed uncertainty Thursday as the financing deal with China's Hawtai Motor Group fell apart, raising fresh concerns about the company's future. Spyker Cars NV, which bought Saab from General Motors Corp. in 2010, said it was "forced to terminate" the $223 million (euro150 million) agreement with Hawtai since the Chinese company was not able to obtain all the necessary consents, including approvals from different shareholders.

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U.S. Exports Reach Two-Decade High Despite Deficit

May 11, 2011 9:29 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. companies in March sold the most goods and services overseas in nearly two decades. But a big jump in oil prices pushed the nation's trade deficit higher. The trade deficit rose 6 percent to $48.2 billion, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. That's the highest level since June 2010.

Toyota: U.S. Production To Hit 70 Percent In June

May 11, 2011 9:17 am

DETROIT (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp. says North American production will rise to 70 percent of normal in June as the company begins to recover from parts shortages caused by the earthquake in Japan. The company cut production to about 30 percent of normal in May by idling factories for several days or reducing their hours.

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Job Openings Rise To Highest Levels Since Sept. 2008

May 11, 2011 9:06 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Companies in March advertised the most jobs since the peak of the 2008 financial crisis, a sign that hiring is likely to remain healthy in the months ahead. Job openings rose by 99,000 to 3.1 million in March, the Labor Department said Wednesday. That's the highest level of openings since September 2008 and the second straight monthly increase.

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Organic Food, 700 Jobs Coming To South Carolina

May 11, 2011 9:04 am

GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) — The California-based organic frozen food producer Amy's Kitchen is coming to South Carolina with $63 million for a new plant and 700 jobs over six years, officials announced Wednesday. Gov. Nikki Haley hailed the development as a major economic win for the region and the state as a whole.

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Philip Morris CEO: Quitting Smoking Is Easy

May 11, 2011 8:58 am | by Michael Felberbaum, AP Tobacco Writer

RICHMOND, Virginia (AP) — The head of cigarette maker Philip Morris International Inc. told a cancer nurse Wednesday that while cigarettes are harmful and addictive, it is not that hard to quit smoking. CEO Louis C. Camilleri 's statement was in response to comments at its annual shareholder meeting in New York, in which the seller of Marlboro and other brands overseas spent most of the gathering sparring with members of anti-tobacco and other corporate accountability groups targeting its marketing and regulatory dealings.

J&J Recalls HIV Drug For Musty Odor

May 11, 2011 8:52 am | by Linda A. Johnson, AP Business Writer

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Johnson & Johnson is again recalling a prescription drug because of an odd musty odor likely caused by a chemical on shipping pallets. J&J said Wednesday that it's recalling five lots of its HIV medicine Prezista at the wholesale and pharmacy level in five foreign countries: Austria, Canada, Germany, Ireland and the United Kingdom.

India's Court Rejects Heftier Charges For Bhopal Disaster

May 11, 2011 5:02 am | by Ravi Nessman, Associated Press

NEW DELHI (AP) — India's Supreme Court rejected an appeal Wednesday to reinstate stronger charges against seven people convicted of negligence in connection with the 1984 toxic gas leak in Bhopal that killed an estimated 15,000 people. The leak at a Union Carbide plant, the world's worst industrial accident, left thousands more with devastating deformities and other health problems.

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Antitrust Regulators Axe Tyson's Sale Of Va. Plant

May 11, 2011 4:55 am

HARRISONBURG, Va. (AP) — Antitrust regulators have filed a lawsuit to undo the sale of a Tyson Foods Inc.plant in Harrisonburg, Va., saying the deal could hurt competition for farmers in the area. In its civil lawsuit, the U.S. Department of Justice claims the sale would reduce the number of poultry processors around Harrisonburg, giving farmers little choice when it came time to sign contracts to grow chickens.

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U.S.-China Talks Lead To No Currency Progress

May 11, 2011 4:49 am | by Martin Crutsinger and Matthew Pennington, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sharp U.S. criticism of China's human rights record overshadowed the results achieved at annual high-level meetings between the world's two largest economies aimed at resolving disputes over trade and foreign policy. After two days of talks, the two sides announced a range of modest agreements aimed at increasing sales opportunities for U.

Chinese Auto Sales Fall For First Time In Two Years

May 11, 2011 4:38 am | by Elaine Kurtenbach, AP Business Writer

SHANGHAI (AP) — Auto sales edged lower in China in April, the first such decline in over two years, as dealers were dealt a double whammy from weakening demand and the spillover from Japan's earthquake disaster. Automakers delivered 1.55 million vehicles to buyers in April, down 0.25 percent from a year earlier, the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers said in a statement seen Wednesday on its website.

Execs Convicted Of Bribing Mexican Officials

May 11, 2011 4:35 am | by Greg Risling, Associated Press

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A California company and two of its executives were convicted Tuesday of conspiracy charges for bribing government officials at Mexico's state-owned utility in exchange for obtaining lucrative contracts. A federal jury found Keith Lindsey, president of Lindsey Manufacturing Co.

Toyota's Profit Tumbles 75 Percent After Earthquake

May 11, 2011 4:28 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota's quarterly profit crumpled more than 75 percent after the March earthquake and tsunami wiped out parts suppliers in northeastern Japan, severely disrupting car production. The maker of the popular Prius hybrid gave no forecast for the current fiscal year through March 2012, citing an uncertain outlook because production continues to be hampered by shortages of parts.

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Dean Foods Sees 1Q Profits Tumble

May 10, 2011 9:39 am

DALLAS (AP) — The largest U.S. milk producer, Dean Foods Co., said Tuesday that maintaining and raising its prices and expanding to new markets will help it fight falling milk sales and rising costs and meet its brightened earnings forecasts for the rest of the year. Dean Foods, which cut 600 jobs and reduced other costs during the first quarter, said its net income for the period slid 41 percent from a year earlier.

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Warehouse Stock, Sales Rise For 15th Straight Month

May 10, 2011 9:27 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Wholesale companies increased their stockpiles for the 15th straight month in March, a sign they expect future sales gains. Supply levels at warehouses rose 1.1 percent in March, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. Sales among wholesalers increased 2.9 percent and have risen in eight of the last nine months.

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Toyota Opens First Pipeline-Fed Hydrogen Fueling Station

May 10, 2011 9:17 am

Torrance, Calif. — Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. (TMS) today celebrated the opening of the first hydrogen fueling station in the U.S. fed directly from an active industrial hydrogen pipeline. The station is a collaborative effort between Toyota, Air Products, Shell, South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) and the Department of Energy (DOE).

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