Business Resumes for El Angel Four Months After Quake

May 8, 2009

A Costa Rican food products company has rebounded after the Jan. 8 magnitude 6.2 earthquake flattened its facilities, located in Cinchona near Poás Volcano, very close to the epicenter of the quake.

El Angel – which produces salsas, syrups and juices – resumed operations on April 30 in a new 2,000-square meter plant in Cinchona.

In a statement, Minister of Institutional Coordination Marco Vargas said. “The company’s return to operation symbolizes the reactivation of the region’s economy, which benefits not just the direct workers of the company, but also other producers in the area.”

The Jan. 8 earthquake, that rattled the region east of Poás Volcano, killed 23 and left hundreds of people homeless. The Costa Rican government since has been blamed for not doing more for the rehabilitation of the region.

Although all 300 employees were at the plant at the time of the quake, only three people were injured (TT, Jan. 23).

The company’s recovery isn’t the only accomplishment celebrated by local leaders, employees and residents. El Angel was also recognized on Thursday for retaining each one of its 300 employees and paying their salary following the earthquake, even when operations were suspended.

“Without a doubt, the most important (accomplishment) is its great (relationship) with its employees … during the months the plant was inactive,” said Vargas.

Despite not producing a single product in four months, it used money from its reserves (so as) not to abandon hundreds of families. That is the spirit of solidarity that we must promote.”

– Chrissie Long

 

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