Hain Celestial cuts jobs to save Luton site

By Elaine Watson

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Hain celestial, Covent garden

Hain Celestial cuts jobs to save Luton site
Hain Celestial has switched production from its Daily Bread sandwich plant in London to its larger factory in Luton in a bid to secure the future of...

Hain Celestial has switched production from its Daily Bread sandwich plant in London to its larger factory in Luton in a bid to secure the future of the site.

Luton’s future was thrown into question last year following the loss of a Marks & Spencer (M&S) contract that accounted for 90% of its output.

Production has since been transferred to rivals including Uniq, although Hain will continue to supply ham, cheese and pickle products to M&S from Luton until April, said human resources boss Graham Trevor.

“We switched production from the Daily Bread plant in New Covent Garden Market in London to Luton in November and December last year, as Luton is a larger, more flexible and well-invested site,” he revealed. “This will enable the brand to go for bigger contracts, as the London site is quite small. We did have to make just over 150 people in London redundant, but we have helped secure the future for a lot of staff at Luton.”
London production on hold
The equipment in the London site has not been sold, however, he added: “We could technically recommence production in London. The equipment is still there - we effectively just turned the power off.”
The Luton factory, which used to employ about 370 staff before M&S switched suppliers, now employs about 200 people, he confirmed. “We still need to bring in more volume to secure the longer term future of the site.”
No more redundancies
There would not, however, be further compulsory redundancies when the ham, cheese and pickle products for M&S were phased out in the spring, said Trevor.
Bosses at Hain Celestial were in discussion with several potential customers in a bid to secure new business, said Trevor. “We are a very flexible, well-invested chilled food production site capable of making sandwiches, baguettes, bagels, salads, pasta pots and a variety of other products for caterers and retailers. We have a high quality site and a fantastic, flexible workforce.”
The Daily Bread range of branded sandwiches and snacks is supplied to several companies, museums, sporting and educational establishments, he said. “Daily Bread also holds a Royal Warrant.”

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