Jobs at risk at biscuit maker’s Yorkshire facility

Jobs at risk at biscuit maker’s Yorkshire facility

About 50 jobs are at risk at Fox’s Biscuits' distribution centre in West Yorkshire after its parent company revealed plans to ensure the brand has a "viable future".

2 Sisters Food Group has confirmed that about 50 roles could be made redundant in Wakefield, along with 250 at its base in Uttoxeter, Staffordshire.

In a statement, 2 Sisters said the loss-making manufacturing site in Staffordshire "requires urgent attention" while it is also looking into out-sourcing its warehousing work in Yorkshire.

Fox’s Biscuits’ Uttoxeter site currently employs 780 workers. The business also has manufacturing sites in Batley, West Yorkshire, and Kirkham in Lancashire. Two distribution centres in Uttoxeter and Wakefield also currently employ 63 staff.

"Fox’s Biscuits has recently committed to a major investment plan to maximise new growth and commercial opportunities," said a 2 Sisters spokesman.

"As part of this plan, we have informed colleagues there are number of tough decisions to make as we review manufacturing capabilities to give us the best possible chance of sustained success.

"Regrettably, our loss-making site in Uttoxeter requires urgent attention and biscuit production lines need re-configuring to ensure it has a longer-term, viable future.

"This means we will be entering into consultation with our colleagues around proposals to restructure the site. Around 250 roles will be at risk of redundancy.

"Additionally, a smaller number of colleagues, around 50, at our Uttoxeter and Wakefield distribution centres will also enter into consultation as we explore proposals to out-source this warehousing work. Our key priority now is to hold meaningful discussions with all affected colleagues and their representatives and ensure we explore all possible options before coming to any final decisions."

Rick Coyle, regional officer at workers' union Unite, said the plans could cause "real economic pain".

"Nationally, we are pressing for an urgent meeting with the parent company, 2 Sisters Food Group," he added. "We are having our first meeting with the shop stewards and management on Friday (22 March 2019) where we will digest the full implications of this announcement."