HIGH SPRINGS, Fla. (WCJB)-- Its a shell of its former self, and now, the people of High Springs are losing one of the town's most historic landmarks.
For years the town has been home of the Golden Peanut Mill. The company was slowly but surely slowing production until finally this month, the golden peanut mill closed its doors for good.
The Golden Peanut Mill had touched many High Spring residents, including the town's Vice Mayor Byran Williams, as he worked at the mill in high school.
“I can remember loading the trucks. That was hard work picking up the bags, loading the truck in a special way to send the peanuts out,” Williams said.
During it's prime, Williams said the mill employed 50 or so people, but that, just before it's closing this month, only three people remained.
Williams added he's sad to see the mill go, as it takes a piece of this rural Florida town with it.
“Well, that's another job leaving high springs. Back in the day, it employed a lot of people. It was a full operation during those days, full operation, I mean it was year-round at that time,” he said.
City Manager Ed Booth said that they're still in the process of bringing someone new to use the factory and said medical marijuana cultivation could be an option.
He said the mill already has equipment that could be beneficial for growing and cultivation.
“The marijuana industry is starting to get a foothold in the state, and so it (the peanut mill) has drying beds, it does have a large area that could be used for growing but that is up to that industry to come in,” he said.
Archer Daniels Midland Company owns the Golden Peanut Mill building in High Springs.
The company's spokeswoman Jackie Anderson also sent a statement on the mill closure, "…We appreciate the support of the local area over the years, but unfortunately, the geographic location and volume of the facility made it cost-prohibitive to continue operations in high springs. golden peanut provided severance packages to the three employees impacted by this closure,” she wrote.