A FACTORY in Cambuslang is set to close with 450 jobs being lost.
The 2 Sisters chicken plant in the South Lanarkshire town is to shut down in August after the closure, first mooted in February, was confirmed.
Owners had said that the loss-making 55-year-old site faced “significant challenges to meet the latest standards we require”.
The Rutherglen Reformer reports that workers were informed of the final decision in person by management staff today and given the closure date.
Local SNP MSP Clare Haughey said the decision was “devastating” for the town and nearby communities.
She said: “I am saddened to learn of the decision announced today that the 2 Sisters Food Group are to close their factory in Cambuslang this August despite the best efforts of Unite the Union, the Scottish Government and its agencies.
“My overriding priority now as the constituency MSP is to ensure those who are being made redundant find alternative and suitable work.”
Ms Haughey said that support will be offered by the Scottish Government’s Partnership Action for Continuing Employment (PACE) team.
She added: “I have today written to Uddingston-based Dawnfresh to ask that they consider employing some of the well-trained and motivated staff from 2 Sisters.
“The company could be in line for a major contract from Marks & Spencer, who were a customer of 2 Sisters, and I urge Dawnfresh to speak with the workforce in Cambuslang should they be awarded this contract and require additional staff.”
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Scottish Labour MSP James Kelly said: “This is a difficult day for Cambuslang, losing hundreds of jobs and a workforce which has been rooted in the local economy for decades.
“There has been a series of failings here, including missed opportunities for major customers of the plant to step in and save it.
“The priority must now be to ensure that any impact is minimised and the Scottish Government should launch a taskforce for Cambuslang.
“The government has so far only opted for a working group, but given the scale of job losses in the local economy, a full taskforce would go further to helping people employed by 2 Sisters.”
A 2 Sisters spokesperson said: “Following an extensive period of consultation with colleagues and external agencies, it is with regret that we can confirm the closure of our site in Cambuslang.
“This is not a decision we take lightly. Since day one, we have been very open on the big challenges the factory faces. In fact we have been trying extremely hard to reverse the position for a considerable period of time. We have invested several million pounds since 2014 and expanded by taking on more people, yet it is still a heavily loss-making operation.
“We have tried every turnaround option available to us for several years, ranging from cost reduction measures and an attempt to grow the business organically. It has made little difference.
“And after many hours of talks in recent weeks, we have not seen any credible proposal to change our view.
“Work at the facility is expected to end in August and we will now explore all options in the gradual movement of product to other sites. We will continue to support all our colleagues with all the redeployment options available to us, whether inside or outside the business.
“And we will of course continue to invest in Scotland when the timing is right, as evidenced by our recent announcement to expand operations at our Coupar Angus site and create 250 new jobs.”
The news follows the closure of Pinney’s fish plant in Annan, which is also set to have a devastating impact on its local community.
In last weekend’s edition of The Sunday Post, we told the story of the Thomson family who said the loss of their jobs would throw their lives into turmoil.
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