At least 90 jobs could be cut from Bernard Matthews’ production factory in Great Witchingham, with a further 50 job losses at its head office.
The proposed job cuts were part of a company-wide restructuring process, which would see chicken production end at the Norfolk factory, and transferred to Suffolk.
‘Proposal to cease production’
A Bernard Matthews spokesman said: “The potential changes are a consequence of the company undertaking restructuring across its head office and a proposal to cease production of chicken at its Great Witchingham factory.
“If these changes proceed, they will create a business which is fit for future growth. Our focus now is to support colleagues affected and ensure we explore all options available to us to mitigate potential job losses.”
The planned job losses are now subject to a 45-day consultation period, Bernard Matthews confirmed. The Unite union will meet the turkey producer tomorrow (February 9).
‘Meeting with Bernard Matthews’
Unite regional officer Steve Harley told FoodManufacture.co.uk: “I am meeting with the Bernard Matthews management and our reps tomorrow [February 9]. We won’t be commenting further until those meetings have been held.”
The planned job cuts came less than five months after Bernard Matthews’ owner – Boparan Private Office – confirmed that 2,000 jobs were safe, following its takeover on September 20. At the time, Harley said it was clear that the turkey producer’s new owner wanted to restore Bernard Matthews to its former glory.
Meanwhile, Boparan Private Office’s takeover of Bernard Matthews was cleared by the Competition and Markets Authority last month. The deal was under investigation into whether the acquisition affected competition in the markets it served.
Bernard Matthews’ planned job cuts – at a glance
- Up to 150 jobs at risk in total
- At least 90 jobs at Great Witchingham production factory
- 50 jobs at Bernard Matthews’ Great Witchingham headquarters