LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — A longtime employer is closing it's doors by the end of April.
The Coca-Cola bottling plant at 830 N. Sixth St. in Lafayette is laying off some of its employees and consolidating its operations to a new automated distribution center in Whitestown, Indiana, according to a recent letter the company sent to the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.
The plant is owned by Coca-Cola Consolidated, which is the largest Coke bottler in the United States, according to its website.
The company says in the letter the layoffs will happen over a two-week period beginning April 18.
About 50 people who work at the Lafayette plant will be affected. A spokesperson for Coca-Cola says in a statement to News 18 the vast majority of them could transition to working at the Whitestown facility, which is about an hour drive from Lafayette.
Kara Webb, workforce development director for Greater Lafayette Commerce, says she hopes many of them choose to stay in the area.
"It does appear a lot of those jobs will be moving to Whitestown, but if those folks wanted to stay close and want to be still working in our community, there are a lot of opportunities that are open right now," she says.
Webb says the announcement is a big hit to the community.
"They've been so great and active as a partner in the Greater Lafayette community, so we're here to help with whatever transition any of those workers would need," she says.
Webb says anyone who wants to find a new job in the area should reach out Greater Lafayette Commerce for help and consider an upcoming virtual job fair.