350 jobs to go as pork factory closes

About 350 jobs are expected to be shed after pork products manufacturer Tulip announced it is to close its factory in Thetford.

About 350 jobs are expected to be shed after pork products manufacturer Tulip today announced it is to close its factory in Thetford. Despite significant investment in the factory over recent years Tulip has been unable to return the operation to profitability and, as a result, is now proposing to transfer production to other sites around the UK.

Peter Judge, Managing Director of Tulip's North East Division explained: “It is with great sadness that we are announcing our intention to cease the production of Fresh Pork and Fresh Bacon products at our Thetford site. This proposal is in no way a reflection on the quality or dedication of our workforce and we very much regret the impact that today's announcement will have”

“However, the Thetford site has been losing money for several years and whilst we have tried very hard to return the factory to profitability it is a very old site and has inherent infrastructure and environmental issues that we are unable to overcome”

“Our business is operating in a very competitive marketplace that currently has significant over capacity and therefore consolidation is critical if Tulip is to establish itself as the lowest cost producer in the UK. To that end, we envisage that production from Thetford will be transferred to our sites in Cornwall, Westerleigh and Tipton in due course.”

Management will now enter into a 90-day consultation period with Union representatives regarding the future of the Thetford site and will be working closely with them to identify ways in which they can lessen the impact and support those employees affected by the potential closure.