Kerry Group is set to cut back 31 jobs at its Carrickmacross factory in Co Monaghan, due to plummeting sterling exchange rates.
The redundancies had been announced back in January, after a review of the facility across last year, according to AgriLand. The review sought to optimise efficiency and ensure sustainability and viability at the plant as a result of negative currency effects resulting the referendum.
Due to the facility’s proximity to the Irish border and its output being primarily frozen meals exported to the UK. This makes it particularly vulnerable to Brexit fluctuations as a result.
Staff were told that the redundancies are spread across a number of areas and that some roles will be reorganised to avoid job duplications.
The Monaghan facility will employ 385 people after the job cuts come into effect.
No other company pants are under threat, according to Kerry Group. The company added that it was investigating further methods to improve efficiency apart from job numbers and that it was necessary to safeguard the facility as a whole.
The Tralee-based company set ambitious five-year plans to grow between 4-6% per year, with a focus on acquisition to hit these targets.
Trade union SIPTU has called the decision by Kerry Group “unacceptable” and has called on the company to reconsider its plans.
“Management announced it will unilaterally be implementing compulsory redundancies within the factory, with up to 31 workers forced to leave the company on Thursday March 1,” said Jim McVeigh, SIPTU organiser.
“This is unacceptable,” he continued. “When we got wind that management was attempting to effectively dismiss our members without proper consultation we immediately sought an urgent meeting with the company.”
“At that meeting, we made it clear that our members are vehemently opposed to any compulsory redundancies and stressed that a voluntary scheme was the only way to avoid a dispute,” he said.
“If jobs must be lost, then the only fair way forward is to put in place a decent voluntary scheme that would allow workers who wished to go, to leave, and those who want to stay, to remain,” the SIPTU representative said.
McVeigh said that SIPTU intends to ballot their members on the company proposals tomorrow, but will continue to meet with Kerry Foods management over the coming days in an attempt to resolve any potential dispute.
© 2018 - Checkout Magazine by Kevin Duggan