Premier Foods to axe 300 jobs in factory closure

Premier Foods, the parent company of Mr Kipling and Oxo, is to axe 300 jobs due to a proposed closure of its Knighton manufacturing site.

According to the company, the manufacturing site, which predominantly produces non-branded powdered beverages, is “not aligned” to the group’s branded growth model strategy.

The group also added it was marginally unprofitable at trading profit. As a result, the company is entering into colleague consultation on its proposed closure, affecting 300 employees.

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In a statement, the group said: “It is recognised that this will be an unsettling time for those c.300 colleagues who are potentially affected by these proposals, and they will be fully supported and consulted with throughout the process.”

Under the proposals, effective from later this year, non-branded revenue contracts of £27 million sales will be “carefully managed for exit”, Premier Foods said.

The news comes in a trading update, which the company reported a 12% increase in sales for the 13 weeks ended 31 December 2022.

Branded sales also saw an 8.8% increase, alongside a 17.4% increase in its grocery arm of the business.

The parent company of Mr Kipling added that sales for sweet treats dipped 0.9% compared to the same period last year.

“Input cost inflation remains at elevated levels, and we continue to take action to offset this inflation through a range of measures,” CEO Alex Whitehouse said.

“With strong trading momentum as we enter our final quarter of the year, and with more brand investment and new product launches to come, we are well on track to deliver on expectations for the full year.”

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