Scores of north-east jobs are set to be lost after dairy giant Muller announced plans to close their Aberdeen milk plant “as soon as reasonably practical”.
The company is set to close the plant as part of a restructuring that will also see its East Kilbride dairy close but a further £15million pound investment made in its North Lanarkshire facility.
USDAW national officer described the decision as a “devastating blow” to workers.
He said: “After extensive local consultation with the business in an attempt to secure jobs, today’s news is a devastating blow for the loyal and hardworking staff in Aberdeen and East Kilbride.
“Usdaw remains concerned at the potentially premature nature of the decision regarding the East Kilbride site given that the company do not anticipate it closing for up to another 24 months.
“Usdaw has secured a commitment from the business that a formal dialogue will continue at East Kilbride during this time as we believe there remain a number of issues where further discussion is required.”
Forty-three farmers who supply the company’s Aberdeen plant have been offered the opportunity to continue supplying milk but only if they pay a 1.75 pence per litre charge to cover the cost of transporting the milk.
Muller Milk and Ingredients managing director Andrew McInnes added: “We recognise that this change will affect our colleagues at both sites and farmers in the North East but this announcement is a key step towards building a sustainable, diverse and future focused dairy business in Scotland and the UK.
“Unfortunately the status quo was not sustainable within our Scottish dairy network, with both Aberdeen and East Kilbride dairies operating well-below capacity. By investing in Bellshill we will be better able to optimise the value in the milk we buy from dairy farmers.”
By Derek Healey
Source: Press and Journal
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