The workforce at Linwoods’ Monaghan Road headquarters in Armagh will be reduced by 90 full-time employees. The company will also cease its van sales distribution business.
Linwoods Health Foods and all contracted bakery production with the company would not be affected by the restructuring and redundancies, the company claimed.
John Woods, joint managing director of Linwoods, said: “This is obviously a very difficult decision for our company today and our priority is our people. We will do all that we can to make this process as smooth as we can for them and their families.
‘React to a change’
“Linwoods has been a business at the heart of the County Armagh community for a long time and in order to continue to do this we have had to react to a change in the requirements of our market.”
The buying habits of Linwoods’ customers have changed, claimed Woods, which saw demand for 800g packs of white bread falling in recent years.
“When this is combined with the increasing costs for distribution of our bakery and dairy products, it has become a wholly unviable prospect for the future of our business,” he added.
“In comparison to this our health food business is growing and continues to be successful around the world. Our focus and our investment will now be placed on this side of the business.”
‘Health food business is growing’
Established 60 years ago as a small grocery shop, Linwoods diversified from a bakery and dairy business into health foods in 2002. Linwoods now exports its products across the UK, Europe and Asia.
The company has 250 full time and 45 casual employees in Northern Ireland and operates across two sites in County Armagh.
Meanwhile, 2 Sisters Food Group is to close its Cambuslang site in Scotland with the loss of 450 jobs.