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“The decision to discontinue production of this product line was a very difficult one for all of us,” said Hugh B. Vanderbilt, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer. “My father, my grandfather and I all believed strongly in this business, but the market for this product line has dropped steadily over the years while business costs have continued to increase. In the end, we ran out of options. We sincerely regret the impact this will have on the affected employees and on the community.”
While R.T. Vanderbilt has been processing talc at Gouverneur since 1948, it has become a relatively small part of the company’s operations overall, representing less than 7% of total revenue in 2007. The production volume of talc at the company’s Gouverneur facility has dropped from over 200,000 tons in 1988 to approximately 80,000 tons today.
“To allow our customers adequate time to reformulate their products, we made the decision to maintain production through 2008, and we will be providing technical assistance to them as well,” said Roger K. Price, president and chief operating officer. “In the coming weeks, we will also be discussing the impact of these decisions with the union that represents our hourly employees and with our salaried employees who are affected.”
The company’s website is located at www.rtvanderbilt.com.