Smurfit-Stone Files for Bankruptcy

One of Ontonagon County’s largest employers is filing for bankruptcy.

A week and a half ago, the Wall Street Journal said Smurfit-Stone hired a law firm that specializes in bankruptcy cases.

The company now says it’s asking to reorganize under Chapter 11 protection.

No word yet on what effect this might have on the Ontonagon mill.

It’s shut down right now, with about 2/3rds of its employees out of work since early December.

Company earnings plunged in the last quarter of 2008 with a drop in demand for the packaging products Smurfit-Stone makes.

When the Wall Street Journal story came out, company officials said they were still planning to start the Ontonagon mill back up again at the end of the month.