2 Sisters Witham closure sees 400 jobs lost

By Gwen Ridler

- Last updated on GMT

The closure of 2 Sisters Witham will see the loss of 400 jobs
The closure of 2 Sisters Witham will see the loss of 400 jobs

Related tags Jobs Meat & Seafood Poultry Processing equipment & plant design

Production has ceased at 2 Sisters Food Group’s factory in Witham, Essex, ahead of its permanent closure with the loss of 400 jobs

The poultry processor announced plans to close the site in May of this year in a bid to grow efficiencies across its supply chain.

Of the more than 500 members of staff employed at the site, 102 have secured redeployment across the wider business, namely its factory in Thetford and the Bernard Matthews site in Holton. Another 65 roles were offered at the Bernard Matthews site, but these were not taken up.

Winding down the site

2 Sisters has begun the process of decommissioning the site using a skeleton team of about 12 people. Full closure of the factory was expected to finish by early October.

A statement from the manufacturer said: “Following our colleague consultation process, it is with regret that we can confirm the closure of our poultry processing site in Witham. Unfortunately, we have not been able to identify a viable alternative to closure.

“We would like to reiterate that the tough decision to cease operations at Witham is no reflection on the colleagues at site who have been dedicated, loyal and hardworking, and we would like thank all for their professionalism during a very unsettling time.”

Transformation strategy

The closure of 2 Sisters’ Witham factory was part of a series of actions taken by the poultry processor to accelerate its transformation strategy of improving execution, reducing cost and building a better organisational culture.

Speaking in May, 2 Sisters chief executive Ronald Kers said: “We’re all acutely aware that some of our plans, such as reducing our UK poultry footprint, brings uncertainty for colleagues and it is with regret that we have to make such proposals. But the alternative of doing nothing and hoping for an upturn is not an option.”​

Meanwhile, fish processor Smales has announced plans to close its chilled seafood division, putting 95 jobs at risk.

Related topics Meat, poultry & seafood Operations

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