RALEIGH – The Fayetteville Observer is shutting its “entire production operation” as of April 10 and will lay off 56 employees, according to a formal layoff notice posted with the state of North Carolina’s Department of Commerce.

On Jan. 31, the newspaper said papers would be printed in Gastonia beginning in April.

Workers were informed on Feb. 7, the notice says.

“For transitional purposes,” the notice adds that seven employees will be retained through May 25.

The shutting down of the printing presses and related operations reflects a growing trend across the newspaper industry as it moves more to digital publishing.

Those being laid off include 11 press operators and more than 20 inserters.

The facility is located at 458 Whitfield Street in Fayetteville.

The newspaper is owned by Gannett.