The American Sugar Refining Co is to close its refinery operation at its Domino Sugar plant in New York, with the loss of around 200 jobs.

American Sugar said the refinery business would be ended by February 2004, but around 60 workers would stay on to work in packaging, reported the Associated Press.

President and CEO Jack Lay said the refinery operation in Brooklyn is to be closed because it is not competitive with the company’s three other operations.

The Brooklyn plant has an annual production capacity of 950 million tons of sugar, but only produced 400 million tons last year, Lay said.