Blue Bell closing Richmond distribution center

Blue Bell closing Richmond distribution center

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Still facing the effects of a listeria contamination in its ice cream, Blue Bell Creameries announced Monday it will close its distribution center in Richmond.

A spokeswoman for the company confirmed the news in an e-mail, saying, "Due to limited production and distribution when we return to market, we had to make the difficult decision to close our Richmond distribution center."

Blue Bell's website features a video message from company CEO and President, Paul Kruse, in which he explains the reasons behind the "agonizing decision" made to close the Richmond facility and other locations around the country. 1,400 employees face layoffs.

"At Blue Bell, our employees are part of our family, and we did everything we could to keep people on our payroll for as long as possible. At the same time, we have an obligation to do what is necessary to bring Blue Bell back and ensure its viability in the future. This is a sad day for all of us at Blue Bell, and for me personally," Kruse said.

The company said Blue Bell executives will be contacting area chambers of commerce to ask for their help for employees who have been laid off, and business owners who may have jobs available are encouraged to contact Blue Bell at 979-830-9831 or

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