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Colman’s mustard factory in Norwich to close doors for final time

PUBLISHED: 06:00 22 May 2020 | UPDATED: 13:27 22 May 2020

The new Condimentum facility in Easton will carry on the Colman's-Norwich connection. Picture: Unilever

The new Condimentum facility in Easton will carry on the Colman's-Norwich connection. Picture: Unilever

Unilever

Colman’s workers will close the gates to their Norwich factory for the final time today, having called the site home for nearly 166 years.

Making and filling mustard tinsin 1940. Picture: Colman's/UnileverMaking and filling mustard tinsin 1940. Picture: Colman's/Unilever

The historic mustard brand has been operating in Norfolk since 1814.

The brand is owned by Unilever, which announced in March 2018 it was shutting the Carrow Works site making 113 redundant or reassigned.

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The move came after Britvic, which makes products like Fruit Shoots and Robinsons, announced it was closing its factory in October 2017.

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Andy Watts, factory manager at Unilever’s Carrow Site, said: “Having spent nearly 30 years working at the Carrow Site, I’m proud of the passion and commitment my colleagues and team have shown, right up to the very last day. A magnificent site, with magnificent employees, I wish everyone all the very best in their next steps in life.”

Community leaders in Norwich have expressed their sorrow at seeing the site close.

Alan Waters, leader of Norwich City Council, said: “This last day reminds us of the long association between Colman’s, Norwich and generations of families that worked at the plant. It’s a very sad moment. Going forward, the Colman’s site forms part of a wider potential regeneration of East Norwich with the possibility of new businesses, employment and homes creating a new community that will strengthen the city.”

Unilever has preserved a link between Colman’s and its Norfolk roots having signed a decade-long supply deal with Condimentum – which has recently opened a state-of-the art mustard mill at Easton.

Carrow Site from the east arial view in 1922. Picture: Colman's/UnileverCarrow Site from the east arial view in 1922. Picture: Colman's/Unilever

The mill will process 5,000 tonnes of mustard seed a year, as well as 1,000 tonnes of fresh Norfolk-grown mint leaves, to produce mustard flour and blended mint for Colman’s condiments.

Mr Watts added: “In a world of constant change, after an amazing 165 years at Carrow, we’re all so pleased that the Colman’s brand stays connected to Norwich through the opening of Condimentum’s new mill, with some of our colleagues now working there and continuing to share their knowledge and expertise.”


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