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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Meatpacking Inspector Cuts Hurting Small Businesses

March 10, 2010 4:09 am | by Ken Kusmer, Associated Press Writer

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana's plan to lay off some meat inspectors to save money and reduce the time inspectors spend with small, independent processors has the industry and farmers fearing it could hurt what has been a growing industry. It's not clear how many of the state's 52 inspectors will be let go, but meatpackers say any layoffs will prevent them from growing to meet demand for locally raised meat.

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French Call Obama 'Anticompetitive' Over Tanker Contract

March 10, 2010 3:57 am

PARIS (AP) — French President Nicolas Sarkozy will raise concerns that the U.S. Air Force's $35 billion tanker contract is anticompetitive when he visits President Barack Obama later this month, a spokesman said Wednesday. EADS, the parent company of Airbus, had partnered with Northrop Grumman to vie for the 179-tanker order, but their consortium pulled out on Monday.

Toyota Sales Up 50 Percent From Last March

March 10, 2010 3:36 am | by Jeffrey McMurray, Associated Press Writer

ERLANGER, Ky. (AP) — A high-ranking Toyota executive says the auto company's North American sales spiked around 50 percent the first eight days of March as incentives helped lure customers after a series of embarrassing safety recalls. Don Esmond, senior vice president of automotive operations for Toyota Motor Sales, said in an interview Tuesday that the early numbers surpassed the company's expectations.

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Federal Investigators Converge On Out-Of-Control Prius

March 10, 2010 3:31 am

Elliot Spagat, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS EL CAJON, Calif. — A Toyota Prius that sped out of control on a California freeway was towed to a dealership Tuesday while federal and company inspectors converged on the car to determine whether a stuck gas pedal was to blame. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sent two investigators to examine the car after Monday's incident, said Olivia Alair, a spokeswoman for the Department of Transportation, which oversees NHTSA.

GM Shreveport Recieves Order For 849 Hummers

March 10, 2010 3:29 am

SHREVEPORT, La. (AP) — General Motors has received a fleet order for 849 Hummers, so the Shreveport plantwon't shut down for two weeks in May, after all. GM spokesman Otie McKinley says the plant has a month to build the H3s and H3Ts. He says Hummer production will resume April 12, and the order must be completed by May 13.

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Chevron Cuts 2,000 'Downstream' Jobs

March 10, 2010 3:28 am | by Sandy Shore, AP Business Writer

Chevron Corp. said Tuesday it will cut 2,000 jobs this year and sell some overseas operations as it revamps its struggling refinery, marketing and transportation operations. The job cuts represent almost 12 percent of its 17,000 workers in the so-called downstream part of its business and just over 3 percent of its overall work force.

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Reid Supply Ready For High-Speed Rail Surge

March 9, 2010 6:30 am

Muskegon, Michigan — Reid Supply Company, a Michigan-based, premier global distributor of industrial supplies for more than 60 years has responded to government’s need for a multipurpose convenience point for builders of rail systems, roads and bridges. The company recently added more than 8,000 items to its online web site and offers free CAD drawings of most of their industrial parts.

Detroit Downsizes To Save Itself

March 9, 2010 4:07 am | by David Runk, Associated Press Writer

DETROIT (AP) — Detroit, the very symbol of American industrial might for most of the 20th century, is drawing up a radical renewal plan that calls for turning large swaths of this now-blighted, rusted-out city back into the fields and farmland that existed before the automobile. Operating on a scale never before attempted in this country, the city would demolish houses in some of the most desolate sections of Detroit and move residents into stronger neighborhoods.

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P&G Recalls 'Taco Night' Pringles For Salmonella

March 9, 2010 3:55 am

CINCINNATI (AP) — Procter & Gamble Co. has recalled two versions of Pringles chips because of concerns about potential Salmonella exposure. The Cincinnati-based consumer products maker says the Cheeseburger and "Taco Night" versions of the snack are being recalled. The company is offering replacement coupons or refunds.

Nature's Valley Expands Pet Food Recall

March 9, 2010 3:42 am

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nature's Variety has expanded its recall of chicken-flavored pet food because of concerns over salmonella. The Lincoln, Neb.-based company said Monday that the raw, frozen food is being recalled because it could be contaminated with salmonella. The recall includes three-pound packages of chicken medallions, six-pound packages of chicken patties and two-pound packages of chicken chubs.

Exelixis Cuts 270 Biotechnology Jobs

March 9, 2010 3:41 am

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (AP) — Biotechnology company Exelixis Inc. plans to eliminate about 270 jobs, or around 40 percent of its staff, as it tries to save money and continue development of cancer drugs with Sanofi-Aventis SA and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. After the market closed on Monday, Exelixis said it will cut jobs and restructure its business to focus on its most advanced drugs.

EU Warns U.S. Of Boeing-Over-Northrop Protectionism

March 9, 2010 3:39 am | by Slobodan Lekic, AP Aviation Writer

BRUSSELS (AP) — The EU on Tuesday warned the United States against protectionism after a European-led consortium pulled out of the bidding for an Air Force contract, saying the terms had been altered to favor a U.S. company. EADS, the parent company of Airbus, had partnered with Northrop Grumman to vie for the tanker project, but their consortium pulled out on Monday.

Miss. Officials Disgusted Over Loss Of Tanker Contract

March 9, 2010 3:38 am

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi officials expressed both disappointment and disgust with a Pentagon process that prompted Northrop Grumman Corp. to drop out of the competition for an Air Force refueling tanker contract. The Northrop proposal had set off a celebration along the Mississippi Gulf Coast and the Mobile, Ala.

Brazil Punishes U.S. With Tariffs On Cars, Ketchup

March 8, 2010 6:57 am | by Bradley S. Klapper, Associated Press Writer

GENEVA (AP) — Affecting products from Ford automobiles to Heinz ketchup, Brazil announced Monday a range of sanctions against American goods in retaliation for the United States' failure to eliminate billions in illegal cotton subsidies. The higher tariffs affecting dozens of products from fresh fruit to sunglasses comes after the World Trade Organization authorized Brazil last year to set $829.

Consumers, Business Locked In Spending Stalemate

March 8, 2010 4:09 am | by Christopher Leonard, AP Business Writer

NEW YORK (AP) — To understand why jobs are so scarce, consider John McFarland and Nicole Rosen. The two share something in common: They're reluctant to spend freely. McFarland is CEO of Baldor Electric Co. in Fort Smith, Ark.; Rosen is a consumer in Washington state. Each is earning and saving money.

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Ex-GM Workers Hope Documentary Will Reveal Hardship

March 8, 2010 3:46 am

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — Four displaced autoworkers invited to the Academy Awards hope a documentary that chronicled the closing of their General Motors factory will draw attention to the plight of the jobless. The HBO film "The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant" was nominated for best documentary short.

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As GM Exits, V-Vehicle Poised To Take Over Louisana

March 8, 2010 3:33 am | by Alan Sayre, Associated Press Writer

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Louisiana has reached a crossroad in its quest to catch up with other Southeast states in the automobile manufacturing business: one of its companies is on the way out, while the other is waiting to get started — both with the help of Washington, D.C. On the way out is General Motors Co.

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Boeing Unexpectedly Cancels Evergreen's 787 Contract

March 8, 2010 3:31 am

MCMINNVILLE, Ore. (AP) — Officials at Evergreen International Aviation Inc. are shocked and disappointed to lose a contract to operate Boeing Co.'s "Dreamlifter" super freighters, the chairman of the McMinnville-based aviation services company said. The converted 747 jumbo jets fly components for Boeing's new 787 jetliners to its assembly plant in Everett, Wash.

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Ohio Missed Out On Solar Revolution, Thousands Of Jobs

March 8, 2010 3:27 am

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — Ohio has missed out on thousands of manufacturing jobs in the solar industry because it was slow to phase out certain taxes and make other adjustments to lure factories, a newspaper reported Sunday. Industry analysts say Ohio is fighting both the perception and reality of having a noncompetitive tax structure compared with other states.

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The 'Lethal Weapon' Against Hugo Boss Layoffs

March 8, 2010 3:25 am

CLEVELAND (AP) — Actor and activist Danny Glover is calling on Academy Awards nominees and others in the film industry to not wear Hugo Boss suits at Sunday's awards ceremony. The "Lethal Weapon" star, in collaboration with the Workers United labor union, made the request in a letter on behalf of 375 Cleveland-area factory workers who'll lose their jobs if the German company closes the plant at the end of next month as planned.

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