Redundancy risk at King’s Lynn factory

The 'Tulip' canned meats factory in Beveridge Way on the Hardwick Narrows.
The 'Tulip' canned meats factory in Beveridge Way on the Hardwick Narrows.
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Nearly 40 jobs could be axed at a Lynn meat processing factory, a company has confirmed.

Tulip Ltd says its factory in Beveridge Way, on Hardwick Narrows Estate, has been operating on a “substantial” loss” for months and is looking to make changes to the working conditions of hundreds of people.

The firm has told the Lynn News that 39 roles at the factory are potentially at risk of redundancy.

Tulip will also be looking to alter shift patterns along with pay and conditions for all of the 400 people who work at the site.

The firm is now embarking on a consultation with staff which is expected to finish in March.

Tulip’s HR director Kirsty Wilkins said: “Since the summer of 2013 our Lynn site has been operating at a substantial weekly loss and this, combined with the fact that we are operating in a sector that has significant overcapacity, means we really have to take action to address the situation.

“As a result we are proposing a number of changes to existing pay and conditions, including a return to a five-day working week, which we believe is necessary to secure the long-term viability of the operation and we will be holding talks with the site’s representatives regarding these changes as well as entering a formal 45 day consultation regarding the roles potentially at risk of redundancy.

“We will of course over the coming weeks be working closely with colleagues and their representatives to explore all viable alternatives to our proposal and will, wherever possible, do everything we can to help lessen the impact on those affected.”

The consultation is expected to last until early March and no decisions will be taken by the company before the conclusion of the process.

Last year, the company announced that 150 jobs would go at its factories in Lynn, Boston, Lincolnshire and Bodmin Cornwall.

This factory produces sliced cooked meats including ham, corned beef, turkey and chicken.

The Lynn factory was originally owned by Baxters Butchers but was later bought by the East Asiatic group, which owned the Plumrose brand.

In 1993, the site was bought by Danish Company VJS, which merged with Danish Crown in 1999 to create Tulip UK.

In 2002, the company extended and updated the site’s manufacturing and slicing units.

Tulip also 17 factories across the country, including sites in Spalding, Ruskington, Bury St Edmunds. The company is one of the biggest pork processors in the UK.