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The Ventura County Star

September 20, 2001


SALEM, Ore. (AP) -- PictSweet's mushroom farm in Salem, plagued by boycotts and Canadian imports as a farm-workers union tried to organize the workforce, will close later this year, company officials said Tuesday.

About 300 people work there.

The site had been losing money because of increased costs, environmental regulations and imports from British Columbia, said John Haltom, mushroom division president for parent company United Foods Inc. He said the union campaign at the local Pictsweet plant played no role in the closure.

The company's plant in Ventura will remain open.

The Northwest Treeplanters and Farmworkers United, which has been in talks with PictSweet since January 2000, wanted the company to negotiate a contract with 350 plant workers in Ventura and with the NTFU on a pact for workers in Salem.