Greencore to scrap long-life ready meal production

By James Ridler contact

- Last updated on GMT

Greencore is to scrap long life ready meals, as revealed in its Q3 results
Greencore is to scrap long life ready meals, as revealed in its Q3 results
Prepared foods manufacturer Greencore aims to stop producing longer-life ready meals at its Kiveton factory in Sheffield, according to third-quarter results for 2018, which revealed modest sales and profit growth.

The phasing-out of longer-life ready meals from the plant formed part of the manufacturer’s strategy to transition part of its ready meals portfolio to fresher ready meal products. The decision follows the phased closure of Greencore’s desserts manufacturing facility in Evercreech in June.

Manufacturing of long-life ready meals at the Kiveton site would be transferred to other parts of the company’s ready meal network, while it continued to produce quiches and soups.

Greencore said the proposal required employee consultation and, if agreed, the proposed closure of the unit would complete in March 2019 – incurring “modest cash costs”.

Rise in sales

The plan to phase out longer-life ready meals comes as Greencore posted a 0.5% rise in sales (£639.6m) for the 13 weeks to 29 June 2018. In the year to date, the company’s sales have grown by 14% (£1.8bn).

Sales of convenience foods in the UK and Ireland were the main drivers of revenue for the company, up 1.4% for the quarter (£375.9m). This was further driven by Greencore’s food-to-go business, with sales of this category up 10.7%.

In the report, Greencore said: “In the UK the group continues to strengthen its commercial relationships, implement initiatives to drive profit progression and streamline its leadership structures.”

New UK CEO

The company also announced that Peter Haden – currently Greencore chief operations officer – has been appointed to the newly created role of chief executive of Greencore UK, effective October 2018.

Sales in the US didn’t fare as well for the manufacturer, clocking in at £263.7m – a 0.8% dip. However, in the year to date, Greencore reported sales of £767.2m, up 29.9%. It said the recently integrated Peacock Foods – which it purchased at the end of 2016 – helped push up production volumes.

Meanwhile, high street baker Greggs continues to invest in its supply chain operations​, as it posts growth in sales and pre-tax profits in its 2018 half-year results.

Related topics: Fresh produce

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