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Fruit of the Loom adds third shift, jobs

VIDALIA —Fruit of the Loom in Vidalia is adding a third shift and 28 new jobs to its location at the industrial park.

Vidalia Apparel is one of the largest private employers in the Miss-Lou with 300 employees, and the addition of 28 new jobs is meant to help the company better accommodate its customers, vice president for distribution Jody Doucet said in a press release.

Many of the facility’s customers want more frequent deliveries of products, Doucet said, changing the production schedule.

The company currently operates two 10-hour shifts Monday through Friday.

The new arrangement would operate two 10-hour shifts Tuesday through Friday, and one 12-hour shift Saturday through Monday, allowing the company to operate seven days a week.

“By adding a third shift to our operation, the quality of life for our workforce greatly improves,” Facility Manager Derrick Means said. “Our workers will have more time off with their families while maintaining a full-time job.”

The new job openings will range from janitorial positions to equipment operators, with pay ranging from $10 to $15 an hour.

Anyone interested in applying for any of the new positions can apply at the Louisiana Workforce Commision in Ferriday or the Mississippi Department of Employment Services in Natchez.

With the current state of the economy, and unemployment rates bobbing up and down, 28 new jobs would be a huge boost to the parish, Chariman for Concordia Economic and Industrial Development District Richard Young said.

“Considering our recent economic struggles we are thrilled to hear that Fruit of the Loom decided to add jobs to their facility in Concordia Parish,” he said.

Vidalia Mayor Hyram Copeland said Fruit of the Loom has been a great asset to the parish since it arrived in 1995.

“We have been honored to have Fruit of the Loom’s presence in our community and we are pleased that they have made another significant investment in the Miss-Lou,” he said.

Vidalia Apparel is housed in a one-million square foot building in the Vidalia Industrial Park and distributes Fruit of the Loom’s casual wear and intimate apparel product lines.