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Tyson Shuts Two Beef Plants

The company expects a charge of $46 million.
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Tyson Foods

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, the company that turns farm animals into food, is closing two facilities in Nebraska, including a beef-slaughtering plant in West Point.

The Springdale, Ark., company is also shutting a beef-processing operation in Norfolk. Production will be shifted primarily to Tyson's complex in Dakota City, Neb., which is getting a new beef-processing addition.

About 365 jobs at the West Point plant and 1,300 at the Norfolk facility will be affected. Workers at both locations will continue to be paid and receive benefits for 60 days, and they will be briefed on other jobs at Tyson. The company said it will encourage employees to consider transferring to other Tyson plants, such as facilities at Dakota City and Lexington, Neb., and another operation in Emporia, Kan.

Tyson expects to record a second-quarter charge of $46 million, or 8 cents a share. For fiscal 2006, Tyson is projecting earnings of 42 cents to 72 cents a share. The company said its business continues to be affected by "tight cattle supplies, an abundance of protein, interruptions in export market access and soft international demand."

In addition to beef, the company also produces chicken and pork for consumption. Tyson believes the Nebraska moves will produce annual pretax savings of around $40 million. Shares of Tyson were down 10 cents to $14.64.