Casket Parts Maker Shutters Indiana Factory

Ampcor factory in northern Indiana that made casket parts has closed, putting about 50 people out of work.

LAPORTE, Ind. (AP) -- A northern Indiana factory that made casket parts has closed, putting about 50 people out of work.

The Ampcor factory had been in operation in LaPorte since 1962, but business owner Dave Christian says it had struggled in recent years because the growing number of cremations had reduced demand for its metal casket handles.

Christian said one of its major customers also recently decided to buy less expensive handles from a Chinese supplier.

Plant manager James Keitz says he was told about the closure just five minutes before the entire staff was informed last week.

Christian says he will try to reopen the plant through restructuring and other steps to cut operating costs.

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