PRYOR - The Gatorade manufacturing plant in Pryor announced Tuesday 22 salaried positions will be eliminated.

The announcement comes after the plant announce that is will shut its doors until Oct. 20.

“There was too much inventory so the production workers were sent home with pay,” said Sander Mitchell, MidAmerica Industrial Park administrator, as he explained the shutdown.

The production employees will not miss a beat, he said

Gatorade's parent company PepsiCo also announced plans to cut 3,300 jobs and close six plants as it deals with lagging drinks sales. The company reported a 9.5 percent drop in third-quarter profit and offered a downbeat profit outlook.

“I have been given every indication that Gatorade is committed in Pryor,” said Chris Weber, facility manager in an e-mail.

PepsiCo announced a number of productivity measures that touch all of our divisions in markets across the globe and include corporate offices as well as plant locations, he said.

The scope of the investment that PepsiCo made in Pryor shows a significant commitment to the facility and the community, he said.

“These actions are necessary to ensure the future growth of our business,” Weber said. “We continue to remain committed to our facility and the community in Pryor … Any time we have to make tough decisions that affect our people, we do it with considerable thought and in as supportive a way as possible,” Weber said.

In 2007 Pepsico Inc. added 280 jobs and spent $180 million to build a manufacturing and distribution center at Pryor's MidAmerica Industrial Park.

The 1.4 million square-foot warehouse and distribution center is the largest Gatorade plant in the world.