CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Charlotte's Coke Consolidated says it is cutting 350 jobs, including 35 in its headquarters city, in the wake of soaring fuel and sweetener costs.
The Charlotte Observer reports that the cuts represent about 5 percent of the 6,500 people working for the nation's second largest Coke bottler, which operates in nine southeastern states.
Attrition and other previous departures have already trimmed about 200 employees, with the balance of 150 representing new layoffs. The company expects to take a charge of $4 million to $5 million as a result of the job cuts.
Bottlers use corn syrup to sweeten soda, and corn prices have jumped with demand for ethanol. Bottlers also have struggled with weakening soft drink sales and higher fuel costs for their delivery fleets.