The parent company of the StarKist Samoa cannery facility in American Samoa has announced a number of expanded cost-saving actions.
It says these new cost-saving measures will be put into place to offset dramatically escalating costs in American Samoa, primarily ongoing minimum wage increases.
The next wage hike, of 50 cents per hour, is set to go into effect in May 2009.
The company is eliminating about 20 full time salaried positions, hourly employee pension benefits and cut seven paid holidays as well as paid vacation for hourly employees.
StarKist is making these changes, the majority of which will take effect January 1, 2009, to avoid a reduction in processing employment at the facility in the near term.
Dongwon Industries, which now owns Starkist intends to remain in operation in American Samoa, but will continue to evaluate the economic viability of the company's operations in Pago Pago.