US clothing company Delta Apparel is to consolidate its US screen printing operations, closing its Soffe decoration facility at Wendell, North Carolina.

The move, which will lead to 135 job losses, is part of the company’s continuing efficiency drive.

Delta will now consolidate its screen printing operations within Soffe’s facility at Fayetteville, North Carolina, beginning the process immediately and completing it in the first quarter of fiscal 2014.

The company expects the move to secure annual savings of US$1.5m, and to cost $1.5m, of which $400,000 will be incurred in fiscal 2013 and the rest in the first quarter of fiscal 2014.

“As our business becomes increasingly competitive, we can no longer justify the additional cost associated with operating two US decoration facilities,” said chairman and CEO Bob Humphreys.

“We believe this economic decision is in the best long-term interest of Delta Apparel and our shareholders.”