2 Sisters pumps £7.5m into Sandycroft, adding over 200 jobs

By Rod Addy contact

- Last updated on GMT

2 Sisters Food Group has invested in the installation of new technology at the Sandycroft poultry factory
2 Sisters Food Group has invested in the installation of new technology at the Sandycroft poultry factory

Related tags: Meat & Seafood, Technology & Automation, Training & recruitment, Finance

2 Sisters Food Group is investing £7.5m into its Sandycroft poultry factory, creating more than 200 jobs.

The site, based on Sandycroft Industrial Estate in Wales, processes one million birds a week and is one of the biggest sites within 2 Sisters employing more than 1,300 staff. It is a major supplier to the UK’s largest supermarkets, as well as providing wholesale products to KFC.

The investment has enabled the installation of new technology including automated packing lines, new packaging machines, upgrading cutting lines to increase capacity and x-ray bone detection machinery for fillet production.

As a result of the investment, the site was recruiting for more than 200 additional workers in roles such as butchery, trimming, hangers and primary operatives working on various shift patterns.

2 Sisters claims to be one of the highest paying food manufacturers in the region, with an entry rate for new roles at £9.50 an hour and for the skilled roles in butchery paying £11.50 an hour.

Skills crisis

The news comes as president and founder of 2 Sisters Ranjit Singh Boparan warned of 'the worst food shortages in 75 years'​ if the Government did not address the food industry skills crisis.

“This investment is superb news for the future of our site and our colleagues as we create a skilled and sustainable workforce,"​ said a spokesman for the Sandycroft site. "This is a great reward for our colleagues’ hard work, commitment and outstanding efforts in these unprecedented times.

“Colleagues who join the Sandycroft team will have learning and development opportunities enabling the site to develop competent, skilled and sustainable teams and the site prides itself on promoting within, a large number of colleagues recently received 30+ year awards.”

2 Sisters has launched a substantial recruitment drive for hundreds of staff across its Rogerstone​ and Scunthorpe​ factories this year.

In addition to the new roles at Sandycroft, the site will be recruiting up to 60 new Apprentices over the next 12 months.

Apprenticeship programme

Having launched the Butchery Academy Apprenticeship programme with Coleg Cambria​, the site will provide fully-funded Level 2 Food Manufacturing Excellence in Poultry. This would offer a vocational route for Apprentices to gain a nationally recognised qualification whilst earning a market-rate wage, not the usual Apprentice rate, said 2 Sisters.

Apprentices will start on a standard weekly wage of £393 - plus the potential to earn £431 per week after just 12 weeks. New intakes are planned to start every 12 weeks through to July 2022.

Newly recruited staff would enjoy benefits including free in-house training (including L2 food safety and L1 health & safety certification), a subsidised canteen, staff shop, gym membership and retail discounts, 2 Sisters said. They would also get up to 50% discount at selected restaurants and up to 70% discount on days out to locations such as theme parks. 

All vacancies are open to anyone aged 18 or over. There is no age limit and no requirement for any previous poultry or food manufacturing experience as a full structured learning programme will be delivered.

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