Despite layoffs,

Montebello Packaging

remains optimistic

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Despite a production cutback that has resulted in 25 employees being temporarily

let go, Montebello Packaging in Hawkesbury remains optimistic about the future.

The situation resembles the one in the fall of 2009. The Aberdeen Street industry had

weathered the storm and all employees who were laid off then were rehired in May,


Plant manager François Carrier believes the same will happen this time, saying that

this difficult period is temporary.

Faced with a drop in orders, the plant has reduced its production schedule from

five to four days a week, and the number of its lines from eight to four. Workers with

reduced hours will qualify for benefits under a work-sharing agreement.

“We are not dropping our people. We are trying to help them during this period,

which we and our customers believe we will not last long,” stressed Carrier.

Montebello Packaging specializes in the manufacture of aluminum tubes and

containers. Its prime customers are in the pharmaceutical and personal care sectors

in Canada, United States, Europe, India and Mexico. The Hawkesbury business

boasts state-of-the-art technology. However, like many other manufacturers, the firm

is not immune to economic downturns.

“In 2009, it was the economic crisis but we recovered. Unfortunately, I think that

our elected officials have dropped the manufacturing sector in America. This is a pity

because there are good jobs and we work hard every day to be more efficient and to

improve,” says Carrier.

While pharmaceutical businesses in Montréal and the United States have closed,

consumption of medications is increasing. However, Montebello Packaging must

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deal with uncertainty while more and more orders are filled by operations in China

and other countries, says Carrier.

“We are not the only ones to be affected. There are a lot of factories that closed

because of free trade,” he comments, adding that a coalition of unionized workers in

North America could help reverse the trend. “We have to force our governments to

change their position. Canadian workers are also manufacturing workers; they are

not all government employees.”


Accrédité du certificat de conformité de résidences pour personnes âgées, émis par l’Agence de santé et services sociaux du Québec.

Photo Richard Mahoney



cancer research. Everyone has been touched by the disease, note organizers


are shown with Jessica Brunet who lost her grandmother to lung cancer in

October. About $300 was raised.

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