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Kingsmill owner plots end of production in Cardiff factory – almost 200 jobs at risk

Up to 180 workers face being made redundant after Allied Bakeries unveiled a massive restructure which would see operations ceased in the Welsh city. The Maes-y-Coed Road site came under review as part of a plan by the company to embrace “larger facilities in the UK”. While the overhaul would see the end of production at the factory, the site would still be used as a distribution depot. As many as 360 members of staff will now enter a consultation stage with Allied Bakeries.

A company spokesman said: “Earlier this year Allied Bakeries announced the loss of a major own-label bakery contract, following which we have undertaken a detailed review of our bakery network to optimise our production capacity, locations and routes to market.”

He added: “If these proposals are accepted it will regrettably result in some redundancies and we understand that this announcement will be unsettling for our colleagues in Cardiff.

“If these changes go ahead we will provide support to anyone impacted to help them find a new job, either at another Allied Bakeries’ site, or elsewhere in the local community.

“Unfortunately, bread is in decline in the UK and an excess of bread manufacturing means that bakery closures are a consequence of that, coupled with the big retailers wanting cheaper products that are dictated to by cost rather than the quality of the product.”

The Bakers, Food & Allied Workers Union (BFAWU) said it was “disappointed” with the proposal and described it as a blow for Welsh businesses.

BFAWU general secretary Ronnie Draper said: “It’s devastating for Wales if you think about all the things that are going on in Bridgend.”

He added: “A lot of this is down to the power of supermarkets – they shift a product from one manufacturer to another without thinking about the consequences on jobs.”

Allied Bakeries is the company behind many household bread brands, including Allison’s, Sunblest, and Burgen.

The group is owned by Associated British Foods and currently employs about 4,000 workers in the UK.

The shake-up comes after the company called for a review of its UK operations after losing a contract with Tesco.

As of 2020, Allied Bakeries will no longer be supplying the supermarket’s own-brand label bread.

Announcing its interim results last month, the Kingsmill owner included a £65million impairment charge against its income in anticipation of losses from the deal.

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