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Up To 300 Jobs At Risk As Bakkavor Loses Mashed-Potato Contract With Tesco

Published on Jan 19 2016 12:13 PM in Private Label tagged: Trending Posts / UK / Tesco / Bakkavor / Job Cuts

Up To 300 Jobs At Risk As Bakkavor Loses Mashed-Potato Contract With Tesco

Up to 300 jobs may be at risk at Bakkavor, after the ready-meals producer lost its mashed-potato contract with Tesco, TheGuardian.com reports.

The publication says that Bakkavor has begun a 45-day consultation process with 280 staff and 30 employees regarding potential job losses. According to the report, the company hopes to reassign two thirds of its affected staff to making hummus, sales of which are on the rise.

The GMB union, which represents staff at three Bakkavor product plants, said that the £32-million contract equated to 16 per cent of the company’s turnover. Bakkavor stated that trading is now much more difficult, due to the highly competitive marketplace.

"We believe that Bakkavor Meals needs to adapt to the changing market in which it operates to ensure that it remains – and, where possible, becomes – more competitive to deliver future growth," the company said.

The publication also reports that Tesco has been restructuring its relationships with suppliers in response to the fast-growing discounters Aldi and Lidl, and it is trying to simplify its ranges and cut prices.

In order to simplify its range of products, Tesco said, “We’ve had to make some decisions about certain products we stock. However, we still maintain our long-term partnership with Bakkavor across our fresh-food category.”

GMB’s senior organiser, Tony Warr, told the publication that Bakkavor had proposed a new shift pattern that reduced workers’ hours from 40 to 38 a week, but stated, “GMB believes it is wrong and totally unnecessary for the company to cut our members’ hours and pay.”

© 2016 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Brian Dermody. To subscribe to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine, click here.

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