UPDATE: Union calls on seafood bosses to reverse their decision to shut Cromer’s crab factory
Union bosses have called on the owners of Cromer's iconic crab factory to reverse their decision to close the plant and save its remaining 109 jobs.
Unite, the largest trade union in the country, is urging Young's Seafood Ltd to keep the Holt Road site open following yesterday's 'disappointing' news that it would shut this summer.
A Unite spokesman said: 'The company has acknowledged the dedication, commitment and loyalty of the local workforce. However these are empty words when people are being deprived of their livelihoods.
'What is needed is loyalty and commitment by the company, both to the workers and the people of Cromer.
'There is still time for the company to reverse this decision and maintain vitally needed jobs in an area where employment opportunities are scarce.'
Staff were told yesterday that - apart from Cromer crab, which would continue to be processed locally - the 'volume' from the site would be 'transferred and consolidated' into Young's factories in Grimsby.
Uncertainty has been hanging over the plant since September when the seafood firm launched a consultation into the future of the site.
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In a statement Young's explained the move to close Cromer was the 'most financially viable and sustainable option, for shellfish processing, for the long-term.'
The company said it had considered 'short-term and long-term costs, financial sustainability, quality and technical requirements and the manufacturing capabilities of the site.'
Campaigners who had battled to save the factory from closure were left reeling after bosses confirmed it would be shut by August and described the move as a 'bitter blow' for Cromer.
Denise Burke, chairman of North Norfolk Labour Party, added: 'The closure of such a significant business in Cromer is very sad news and the consequences of this decision will be felt throughout the community.
'We are disappointed Young's could not have reached a more favourable outcome.'
As well as the closure in Cromer two sister sites in Cumbria are also being shut and having their work moved to Grimsby as part of wider review of Young's manufacturing processes.