Deere Laying Off 120 In East Moline
by The Associated Press, with additional reporting from Illinois Public Radio
Deere & Co. says it will lay off about 120 workers at its combine plant in East Moline on March 31.
According to the Quad City Times, employees learned the news Thursday during a meeting at the plant. About 2,800 people work at the factory.
Moline-based Deere said this week that it expects the North American farm-equipment industry to see a 5 percent to 10 percent drop in sales this year after a record-setting 2013.
Spokesman Ken Golden said the company must continue to match the size of the workforce with demand.
"We try really hard to communicate with our employees about the fact that there has to be this flexibilty in the workforce, and I believe people are taking jobs with the knowledge that they're going to be first ones laid off if times turn to a negative." he said. "We are hopeful, that although this is an indefinite layoff, that some of individuals will be called back if the market conditions do change."
The company this week reported record first-quarter profits.
Golden said over the last three years, Deere has added 450 jobs at the Harvester Works.
Total employment at Deere's East Moline combine plant is currently around 2,800. The layoffs will take effect on March 31st.