A spokesman for the company told FoodManufacture.co.uk: “We’ve restored 30% of production, and have rejigged shift patterns so that all staff can work.”
He also revealed that plans to open a second production line at a smaller neighbouring facility on the same site, where one line was re-established immediately after the fire, had proceeded ahead of schedule. Due to open last Tuesday, the second line was actually initiated the Saturday before.
New local site
Directly after the fire the firm had been unsure whether it would restore the current Thurnscoe factory or establish operations elsewhere in the longer-term. The spokesman said that the latter option was now the more likely.
“We’ll probably look at establishing operations at a new site locally – the speed at which we do so obviously depends on a variety of business-related factors.”
When asked how constructive discussions with major clients had been, he said: “Our customers have been understanding and we are in ongoing negotiations with them.”
The spokesman confirmed earlier South Yorkshire Fire Service reports that the fire started in a deep fat fryer and spread to the roof, but said the cause was still subject to investigation.
Firefighters were called to the factory early on the morning of July 13 and contained the blaze that caused 80% damage and threatened to envelop two 10,000-litre oil containers and the firm’s offices.
The factory employed 200 staff and produced prepared foods such as pork pies and sandwiches for leading retailers and the cash and carry sector.