Jobs at risk as Vion shuts Ashton

Around 380 jobs are at risk after Dutch giant Vion announced plans to shut operations at its bacon plant in Ashton-under-Lyne.

The Lancashire-based plant is being shut down as part of Vion’s review of its operations, following its purchase of the Grampian Country Food Group in 2008.

The company said it was proposing to close down the processing and slicing operation at Ashton and transfer the bacon curing business to its operation in Malton, and slicing business moving to its facilities in Scunthorpe.

The Ashton facility employs around 380 people and Vion said it was now entering a period of consultation with staff to explore ways to avoid redundancies, including transfers within the business.

Alasdair Cox, director of corporate affairs said: “Due to increasingly competitive pressures from the marketplace, we must continually look to optimise our production facilities to ensure sound foundations for the development of our UK business.

“The proposed changes will provide a stronger platform upon which VION can meet the demands from the market. The planned changes will be supported by additional investment in the Scunthorpe and Malton operations.

“We very much regret the need for these changes in our activities announced today and have informed our employees and their Union representatives of our commitment to consult with them. The commitment from the team at Ashton has never been in question.”

The announcement follows on from news earlier in the year in which Vion announced it would be axing around 820 jobs, with jobs being cut at Malton and Haverhill.