Harrisburg, Pennsylvania-based New World Pasta, a leading marketer and supplier of dry pasta in the US and Canada, will not close manufacturing operations at its Omaha, Nebraska facility on 31 March 2002.

New World Pasta had announced 26 September 2001 that it intended to close the Omaha facility, which employs 18 salaried and 72 hourly workers, in March of this year.

The company explained that the change in policy was due to three factors; sales growth in its flagship dry pasta brands, which include such brands as RONZONI®, CREAMETTE®, SAN GIORGIO®, PRINCE® and AMERICAN BEAUTY®; continued development in its other dry pasta businesses; and the dedicated efforts of its Omaha workforce.

John Denton, chairman and CEO, commented: "We are extremely pleased with the success of our marketing and sales strategies since our acquisition of the Borden pasta businesses in July 2001, and with our ongoing drive to become more competitive and cost-efficient.

"We've seen strong sales growth in our brands over the last several months as compared to prior year periods. These factors, the efforts of our Omaha workforce to reduce costs, and our desire to service our consumers' and customers' growing needs for our pasta products has created the need for greater production capacity, and has convinced us to continue to operate our Omaha plant.

"We are committed," he continued, "to our efforts to lead the category to growth. To do so, we have a unique strategic focus on all segments of our business, including the branded-retail, private-label, food service and industrial businesses."