More than 400 employees of an Energizer-owned factory in Montreal found out Tuesday that the manufacturing plant for feminine-hygiene products will close by early 2017.

The factory on Notre-Dame Street East employs 430 people.

“We will support our colleagues through this transition and will work with local officials to ensure that support and resources to help colleagues re-enter the labor market are made available,” David Hatfield, President and CEO of Energizer Personal Care, said in a news release.

The company said the announcement was made now in order to allow employees as much time as possible to find work before the first phase of lay-offs begins in 2015.

Company officials broke the news to plant workers on Tuesday, then gave them the rest of the day off.

Officials refused further comment, and by the time the news release was made public, only a security guard was left at the plant.

Plant acquired in 2013

Energizer bought the east-end Montreal plant in 2013, as part of a deal with its former owner Johnson & Johnson. It was valued at $185 million.

At the time, the plant employed 525 people making Playtex, Carefree and Stayfree products, and Energizer said no layoffs were planned. 

The plant closure announced today is part of a $350-million restructuring program that the company is undertaking.

Operations at the Montreal factory will be taken over by an Energizer-owned plant in Delaware.

The company said the transfer of operations to Delaware will happen in phases beginning in 2015, and the plant will close in early 2017.