NEWS
08/07/2014 10:28 EDT | Updated 10/07/2014 05:59 EDT

McCain Foods closing Borden-Carleton french fry plant

McCain Foods Canada is closing its Borden-Carleton, P.E.I., french fry facility.

The announcement was made in a news release Thursday morning.

The release blames a shift in the demand for french fries from North America to other regions, increased efficiency at other plants and a continuous strong Canadian dollar for the closure.

McCain Foods says production at the Borden-Carleton plant declined by two-thirds over the last decade, making it the company's smallest and least utilized facility in North America.

The plant will close as of Oct. 31, impacting 121 people. 

The company says it will offer early retirement benefits, severance packages "that exceed regulatory requirements" and will offer retraining options.

"Closing a plant is one of the toughest decisions we ever face,” says McCain Foods president Frank van Schaayk in the release.

 "We deeply regret the personal impact the closure will have on our P.E.I. employees and we are committed to providing support and resources to those affected.” 

Van Schaayk says the company will work with the provincial government and spend $2 million to create new jobs for the affected employees.​

The companybegan slowing production and scaling back shifts back in 2010, sparking concerns from Premier Robert Ghiz, federal Fisheries Minister Gail Shea and the P.E.I. Potato Board.

McCain Foods, whose global and Canadian headquarters are in Florenceville, N.B., operates nine processing facilities across the country with about 3,000 employees.

According to the company's website, McCain makes about a third of all the frozen french fries produced in the world.

MORE:cbcNews