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franklin county times

Burlington Industries keeping
steady pace at Stonewall Plant

By By Steve Swogetinsky/The Meridian Star
April 8, 2001
STONEWALL Business has been steady so far this year at the Burlington Industries denim manufacturing plant.
With around 915 employees, Burlington Industries is easily Clarke County's largest employer. A slow down in denim sales a couple of years ago brought some changes to the plant, including the changing over from a seven-day-a-week production schedule with four shifts to a five-day schedule, 24 hours a day, with three shifts.
Smith said the plant is judged on quality, safety, cost and timely customer delivery. "We are performing well in all categories," Smith said.
Established in 1870 as Stonewall Mills, the plant was purchased by Burlington Industries in 1962.
The Burlington plant is actually two plants in one. The Yarn Plant, which once was the location of the original plant; and the Weave plant, which was built during the 1970s and dedicated in 1979.
The Weave Plant went through a $60 million expansion during the 1990s. That work was completed in November of 1998.
For many years, the Stonewall plant only made four or five styles of high grade denim. That has changed in recent years with the closing of other plants in North Carolina and Virginia. The styles of materials those plants made were transferred to Stonewall. The Clarke County-based plant can make 50 to 60 styles of denim.
On a five day schedule, Stonewall can turn out 900,000 linear feet of denim a week. The plant is currently putting out that capacity.
Steve Swogetinsky is regional editor of The Meridian Star. E-mail him at sswogetinsky@themeridianstar.com.