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168-year-old Peterboro Basket Co. closing, cites forest pest

The emerald ash borer beetle, supply chain issues, and a tight labor market were cited by the owners of the landmark New Hampshire business.

PETERBOROUGH, N.H. (AP) — A 168-year-old company in New Hampshire known for its handwoven, hardwood baskets is closing its factory and stopping production, partly because of an insect pest that has been destroying ash trees.

The Peterboro Basket Company has been in business since 1854.

 Peterboro Basket Co.'s traditional picnic basket. Via:
Peterboro Basket Co.'s traditional picnic basket. Via:

The company said in a recent announcement that the baskets are principally made of U.S.-grown Appalachian White Ash, the same wood used in ax handles and baseball bats.

It said the emerald ash borer beetle has reduced the availability of the wood.

The company said other extreme labor shortages, ongoing supply chain issues, and owners who are "ready to retire," were other considerations.

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