The increase in workforce is designed to help expand its processing, cutting and packing operations for its retail customers.
The majority of the new roles will be production operatives and there are a smaller number in finance, animal welfare, engineering and quality assurance.
Just under half (140) of the roles will be converted from agency positions to permanent 2 Sisters employees, while recruitment manager Chris Adamson will hire the rest from the local area.
An increase in cutting and packing capacity and new thigh de-boning equipment has brought about the need to take on the extra staff, boosting the current headcount to more than 1,200 since January, with 160 new colleagues taken on. The 300 additional new roles will take the factory numbers up to 1,500.
‘Invest at the right time’
Keith Packer, managing director of UK Poultry, said: “We have always said we will invest at the right time in the right location when it benefits our business and our customers. So I am delighted that we are creating these new opportunities at Willand.
“It is not about being bigger; it is actually about having a smaller, more focused footprint that has the capacity to carry out the whole operation. Willand and the greater Devon area is a perfect fit for us, because it gives us access to a strong growing base with excellent farms and a loyal workforce who deliver day in, day out.”
Adamson added: “As you’d expect, we are working closely with local job centres and we’re heavily on social media, but we also need to be creative in our talent pipeline searches. So this includes reaching out to back-to-work charities like Christians Against Poverty, PACE and army career centres.
‘The right attitude and skillsets’
“There are tremendous opportunities at a large employer like 2 Sisters and those with the right attitude and skillsets can build a great career here, as we’ve seen many times in the past.”
2 Sisters also aims to take up to 20 new apprentices in butchery. The new recruits would split their roles between Devon and a 2 Sisters red meat site in the south-west.
The business recently announced that it would be working more closely with the Food Standards Agency to share information.