Husqvarna Turf Care, announced Thursday afternoon that it will be consolidating operations from Beatrice to Orangeburg, South Carolina.

The Beatrice plant currently has approximately 390 employees.

Company officials said final assembly operations in Beatrice will be discontinued during the second half of 2010.

A press release issued by the company Thursday afternoon noted that Husqvarna has previously communicated its intention to implement a number of structural changes in the U.S. and Europe in order to reduce costs and improve the group’s competitiveness.

The measures are aimed at eliminating overlap and duplication within production and administration.

In line with these changes, production of the Zero Turn Radius mowers and Specialty Turf Equipment products in the U.S. will be consolidated into the company’s plant in South Carolina, which manufactures similar products including riding tractors, tillers and snow throwers.

Husqvarna has been a presence in Beatrice since 1999, when it purchased Yazoo/Kees Power Equipment and the following year added the Denver-based BlueBird line of turf care equipment to the company's expanding portfolio. BlueBird operations were transferred to Beatrice in 2002.

Construction of Husqvarna’s current 274,000-square-foot facility near the Beatrice Airport, off U.S. Highway 77, was completed just five years ago.

At the 2004 groundbreaking ceremony for that building, Husqvarna Turf Care Presdient Henric Andersson told those in attendance that the new facility was required due to tremendous expansion.

“State-of-the-art equipment and the new floor plan in manufacturing will increase productivity and streamline processes,” Andersson said at the time.