Mosaic lays off 51 Sask. staff on industry woes

Winnipeg | Reuters — U.S.-based fertilizer company Mosaic Co. said Tuesday it has laid off 51 workers at its Canadian potash operations, as the industry struggles to recover from low prices and weak demand.

Spokesman Rob Litt said the layoffs are spread out among Mosaic’s operations in Saskatchewan, which include three potash mines and an office for the potash segment.

The laid-off workers mostly held office positions and none are union members. Mosaic issued the layoffs Monday.

“Current market conditions required that we review our options to remain competitive while continuing to operate responsibly,” Litt said in an email. “We remain committed to our investments in Saskatchewan, the sustainability of our operations and the communities where we operate.”

Global demand for potash, a key crop nutrient, has grown more slowly than expected in recent years even as miners like Mosaic, PotashCorp and Agrium expanded their Saskatchewan capacity.

In December, PotashCorp said it would slash its workforce by 18 per cent, or more than 1,000 jobs, including 570 positions in its potash operations. [Related story]

— Rod Nickel is a Reuters correspondent based in Winnipeg.

 

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