Unite and Usdaw hope jobs are safe after Chinese firm takes over UK cereal company
Unions representing workers at Weetabix have sought assurances about their members’ future after 60% of the Northamptonshire-based cereal manufacturer was bought by Chinese firm Bright Food.
Unite national officer for food Jennie Formby said: “‘Bright Food has been looking to buy a food company in the UK for some time, so it is no surprise to hear that they are taking a large share in Weetabix, which has been owned by private equity company, Lion Capital since 2004.
“While it is too soon to know the impact this will have on the business, Unite’s concern, at times like this, is always to seek assurances from new owners that our members must not pay the price of any takeover with their jobs and/or a diminution in their employment conditions.
“However, we very much hope that the statements from Bright Food that they will be looking to develop and grow the business will instead lead to greater security.
“We would like a meeting with the new owners as soon as possible to seek reassurances that jobs will be safeguarded.”
Usdaw deputy Midlands divisional officer Gavin Dadley said: “We have spoken to Weetabix today to seek assurances about our members jobs and conditions of service and have been assured by the company that it is very much business as usual.”
“Usdaw is encouraged by the positive statement from Bright Food that indicates a strong desire to grow and develop Weetabix into a global brand. However, at our request the company has agreed to an early meeting with myself and the full shop stewards committee where we will be seeking to establish their immediate and long term plans for the business.”
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