National Spinning says Washington jobs are safe

Published 6:40 pm Sunday, November 12, 2017



National Spinning Co. announced its plans to close the plant in Beulaville last week — a decision that, fortunately, is not expected to affect the Washington operation.

Corporate office staff will remain in Washington, as will a growing Hampton Art manufacturing operation, according to National Spinning Chief Executive Officer Jim Chesnutt.

“As for Beulaville production, a significant amount will be relocated to the Whiteville plant, and some equipment will be relocated,” Chesnutt wrote in an email. “National Spinning will continue production and sales of a wide variety of yarns and has no plans to exit the business. We will continue to focus on the growth of non-textile operations.”

When it comes to the prospect of putting 160 Beulaville employees out of work, Chesnutt is adamant about his disdain for North Carolina’s representatives in the United States Congress. Chesnutt delivered the bad news in person to the Beulaville plant Nov. 1.

“Elected representatives in the US Senate and House of Representatives have ignored blue-collar workers for decades. Bad trade agreements have been negotiated by bureaucrats and approved by Congress and signed by Presidents with little thought to the consequences for hard-working US Citizens living in rural communities,” Chesnutt wrote in a letter addressed to the representatives.

He continues: “This is another sad day. Am I angry? Hell yes! Don’t send me any future mailings asking for campaign monies as I am finished. … You all are out chasing the Amazons and ignoring the jobs that feed rural areas.”

National Spinning Co. was founded by Phillip and Carl Leff in 1921, and relocated its manufacturing to North Carolina in the mid-20th century. In the early 2000s, National Spinning acquired Hampton Art, which sells products to craft stores, and then Carolina Nonwovens in 2012.

As with the Washington operation, the nonwoven fabrics plant in Catawba County is also moving on a path of growth, according to Chesnutt.

“Hampton Art in Washington is experiencing excellent growth and continues to expand staff. Carolina Nonwovens … is performing beyond our expectations,” he wrote in the email.

Chesnutt described the Washington staff members as “outstanding.” They can rest easy for now, knowing their jobs are safe.