Starbucks said Tuesday it has cut 16 jobs at its Calhoun County roasting plant.
The Sandy Run plant, which shipped its first roasted beans just nine months ago, employed about 100 in February.
The cuts were made “to meet our current business needs and continue to run our plant in a better, more cost-effective way,” the Seattle coffee company said in a statement. Starbucks did not say when the cuts were made and did not provide details about what types of jobs were trimmed.
“The decision does not in any way reflect the value or abilities of our partners at (the plant),” Starbucks said. “We are grateful for the support we have received from the central South Carolina community and remain committed to doing business in Calhoun County.”
The county’s unemployment rate was 12.7 percent in June, ranking 29th out of the state’s 46 counties.
Cutting costs and workers as well as closing nearly 5 percent of its worldwide stores helped Starbucks beat Wall Street expectations in its latest quarterly earnings announced last month.
But same-store sales fell 5 percent worldwide in the latest quarter.
The beans used at Sandy Run — between Orangeburg and Columbia — come into the Port of Charleston. Once roasted in large drums, the beans are shipped to distribution centers in Dallas, Nashville, Tenn., and Jacksonville, Fla.
Workers at the $70 million, 120,000-square-foot roasting plant enjoy perks including a free pound of coffee each week.
The Associated Press contributed.