Caterpillar plans to shut down production of forestry products and stop production at its Owatonna, Minn., factory by March 1, 2013, KAALTV.com has reported. About 100 employees will lose their jobs. The Peoria, Ill.-based manufacturer said the decision is a response to weak demand for forestry equipment. Caterpillar will consolidate its forestry manufacturing operations to plants in Wisconsin and Georgia.
The company will shut down in phases and, Caterpillar said, will try to help affected workers find new jobs, including at its other two forestry plants. Caterpillar said it will keep 20 of its engineers in Owatonna to continue their work.