Henderson plant fuels purchase interest

A significant number of interested parties have been looking around the family-owned R Y Henderson's processing plant, which went into administration last month after opening in a fanfare of publicity last September.

A spokeswoman for administrator Ernst & Young said: "The company is continuing to trade and we had a number of potential parties who have expressed interest in buying the plant."

Agriculture minister Ross Finnie, who had supported Henderson's application for the proposed greenfield site and recommended funding of around £620,000 from the Scottish Executive, defended the decision to support the company. "The Scottish Executive recognises that there needs to be investment in the abattoir sector, which supports independent meat processors in Scotland. This is why the Executive supported the development of the RY Henderson's facility."

NFU Scotland president John Kinnaird said: "We are keeping in contact to ascertain what lies ahead for the plant. We are particularly keen to ensure that capacity is maintained within an industry that has already lost too much.

"The business needs to remain operational to provide an outlet for farmers and support jobs

in the area," he added. "Conside-ring the costs involved in upgra-ding some abattoirs, it is even more essential that a buyer is found

for the more modern Hender-

son plant."