OWEGO, NY -- Workers at Sanmina's PCB fabrication plant received a lump of coal for Christmas as the company said it would close the plant in March.

The decision puts more than 300 employees out of work, as well as the largest board shop in the US.

A little over a decade ago, the Owego plant housed some 1,400 employees. Cutbacks had trimmed that number to about 325 as of last week, when 50 temporary workers were given their pink slips. The 274 permanent employees were then told the shop would shut down in early March.

Sanmina Owego was one of the most technically sophisticated PCB shops in the US, capable of producing boards up to 70 layers and 0.500" thick.

The largest PCB plant in the US is now TTM's Chippewa Falls site, at 288,000 sq. ft.

The plant's closing also brings an end to the last holdover from the early Hadco Printed Circuits days. Hadco had acquired the facility, its second, in 1979.

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