Tayto’s Red Mill Snack Foods factory at Wednesbury is scheduled to close next month as all remaining production is transferred to its factory at Corby in Northamptonshire.
A source at Wednesbury told FoodManufacture.co.uk: “Production has been progressively transferring to Corby over the last year or two. There is still a small number of staff working here, but we'll switch over to Corby by the end of September if everything goes to plan.”
While some of the 300 staff that worked at Wednesbury have relocated to Corby, an undisclosed number have been made redundant.
The Wednesbury factory was acquired in March 2008 by Northern-Ireland-based Tayto Group, which shortly afterwards announced plans to close it and move production to Corby.
A company spokeswoman said: “Some of our staff have already transferred to Corby and that option is still available to all other staff.”
She added: “The complex nature of this site has resulted in some elements taking a little longer than expected. However, all employees have been kept informed of developments and have been advised that we are working towards a closure date of September.
“It is our intention to review the business again at the end of September when we will take into account capacities and demand. Only then will we be in a position to make a decision about the future use of the site. At this stage however, it is anticipated that a sale of the land would be the most favourable option.”
Staff on rolling weekly contracts
Staff at Wednesbury were on rolling weekly contracts and were being updated on progress fortnightly by site management, she added.
"One of our top priorities is to keep our customers fully stocked, which we have been able to achieve by working productively and harmoniously.”
Tayto has been steadily building up its snack empire in recent years with the acquisition of Golden Wonder in 2006, Sirhowy Valley Foods – the Welsh firm behind the Real Crisps brand - in 2007, Red Mill Snack Foods in 2008 and upmarket crisp brand Jonathan Crisp in 2009.
The firm, which also operates a crisps and snacks factory in Tandragee in Co Armagh, owns brands including Tayto, Real, Golden Wonder, Jonathan Crisp, Red Mill and Mr Porky.