The poultry processor has invested the money over the course of 2019 as part of a wider programme to improve factory technology, facilities and worker pay and development.
Benefits of the cash injection included an increase in capacity to 100,000 chickens a week and a raise in the starting rate of pay to £9.28 per hour. The investment in technology has also created new job opportunities and supported the development of apprenticeships on site.
Site manager Richard Walden called the investment great news for the city and said the improvement to infrastructure, productivity and raising pay had improved efficiency, helped retain workers and benefited sustainability in the long-term.
New employment opportunities
“We offer a great range of employee opportunities, ongoing development and training, and we’re excited to welcome new colleagues to our team,” said Walden.
Previous investments at Avara Foods’ Hereford factory established it as one of the UK’s most advanced food manufacturing sites – a title the company’s management hoped would continue into the future following completion of the latest developments later this year.
Chief commercial officer Chris Hall added: “Our Hereford operations have been key to the company’s wider success and will be for the foreseeable future.
‘Fit for the future’
“The site undertakes a significant amount of specialist processing and directly supplies some of our biggest customers. This investment is all about making sure this site is fit for the future and cements our place as the city’s largest employer. We’re looking forward to celebrating more successes in Hereford over the coming years.”
Avara’s funding of its Hereford workers and facilities followed the development of a new course to educate engineers on lean practices in manufacturing, in partnership with fledgling training provider New Model in Technology and Engineering.
The new Continuing Professional Development courses will welcome experienced engineering and manufacturing professionals who are seeking the opportunity to enhance their skills, productivity and employability.