DIXFIELD – A planned week-long layoff of most employees working for Irving Forest Products was reduced because a needed inventory adjustment is not as great as previously thought.

The St. John, N.B., company’s spokeswoman, Mary Keith, said Monday that about 20 people will lose their jobs during the week of March 16-20. Previously, the company had planned to layoff about 190 people for the week.

Keith said both shifts will operate in the planer, specialty and value added departments, while only one shift will operate in the sawmill.

The partial slowdown follows two separate week-long layoffs during January and February.

The wood products mill employs about 215 people, including 25 salaried managers. The rest are hourly employees. When in full operation, the mill runs two shifts.

The Dixfield mill is part of a group of wood-working plants that produces eastern white pine for paneling, siding and industrial packaging. Its primary markets are in housing and construction. With the downturn in those markets, adjustments to inventories had to be made, according to an e-mail from Keith.

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