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Minister Encouraged by ACA Poultry Plant Talks

by 5m Editor
13 March 2009, at 8:43a.m.

NOVA SCOTIA, CANADA - Nova Scotia's minister of economic development says he's satisfied with efforts to save a chicken-processing operation in the Annapolis Valley.

Senior department officials met Wednesday with representatives from ACA Co-operative and Maple Lodge Farms, the Ontario-based company looking at buying ACA's plant.

Murray Scott said his department is taking part to ensure the $3.5-million loan guarantee the province provided ACA is secure.

"We still feel very positive as a result of meeting with them and we're encouraged by what we're hearing and what we're seeing," Mr Scott said Thursday.

"They are intent on doing two things: One is to restructure and make it stable, and the other thing is to keep those jobs in Nova Scotia. So we believe that's the case."

More than 300 people lost their jobs after ACA closed its Eastern Protein Foods operation in Kentville and scaled back operations at its office in New Minas earlier this year., according to CBCnews.ca

ACA's chief executive officer, Ian Blenkharn, said the co-operative was forced to make changes to its money-losing operations or risk losing the entire business.

Mr Scott said he's convinced the poultry-processing operation can be restructured so it can stay in business in the future.