Scottish bakery Mortons Rolls will restart production this week after the company was bought out of administration, its new owners have announced.
About 110 workers – nearly half of the previous workforce – are being recalled to work immediately at the company’s factory in the Drumchapel area of Glasgow after being made redundant earlier this week.
Production is set to restart on Sunday to “bring Glasgow’s most-loved morning roll back to life”, Mortons said.
The news comes after a cryptic message was published on the company’s website and social media pages a few days ago reading: “Nae rolls? Watch this space.”
Mortons was bought out by investors PVL after talks with HMRC, administrators and the Scottish Government.
The company is known for its crispy rolls and its fleet of “We built this city on Morton Rolls” vehicles.
PVL said it is confident it can turn the company’s fortunes around and provide further jobs “in the short, medium to long term if the right support is available”.
PVL spokesman John McIlvogue said while the business is “undoubtedly viable”, the factory itself is “antiquated and in need of a serious overhaul”.
He added: “That’s where we need the help of the Scottish Government and its agencies, something we are hopeful we can iron out in the coming weeks.”
Business at the bakery ceased on March 3 after financial difficulties.
FRP Advisory was appointed provisional liquidator last week, and around 230 employees at the bakery were made redundant earlier this week.
Mortons attributed its financial burdens to the Covid pandemic and the rise in energy prices, exacerbated by contractual obligations to large supermarkets.
Commenting on news of production restarting, Mr McIlvogue added: “This is a bittersweet moment for me, for the people who work here and for the wider community that relies on the jobs this factory provides.
“None of us wanted the past couple of weeks to unfold in the way that they have, but it has been entirely out with our control.
“The important thing now is that Mortons is back in action, we’ve got the workforce back on the production line, and we’re ready to start producing our famous rolls that the good people of Glasgow have been crying out for.”
Glasgow Labour MSP Paul Sweeney, who supported the takeover negotiations, said: “It is with a sense of relief that after almost two weeks of intense, detailed discussions, production will now restart at Mortons Rolls and over 100 jobs have been saved.
“These circumstances are by no means perfect, and there is still work to be done to make sure Mortons is a sustainable business that can thrive for generations to come.
“There is a commitment from the Government to make sure they do everything in their power to make sure that is the case, and I will do everything in my power to hold them to that commitment.”
Mortons Rolls was founded by Bob Morton and Jim Clarke at their bakery in the Anniesland area of Glasgow in 1965.
Over the years, the bakery expanded its product range to produce cakes, pastries and items such as sausage rolls and pies.
A Scottish Government spokesman said: “The Scottish Government is aware of reports that Mortons Rolls is to recommence production next week and welcomes the fact that a proportion of staff affected by the company ceasing to trade earlier this month are likely to be re-employed.
“Business minister Ivan McKee and Scottish Enterprise have both spoken with the investor, and have asked for detailed information on proposals for the future of the Mortons Rolls site. We await those details.
“Those employees who are still affected by the closure of Mortons Rolls remain our immediate priority.
“The Scottish Government’s initiative for responding to redundancy situations, Partnership Action for Continuing Employment (PACE), will continue to offer support to affected employees.
“PACE support is already available online and through the PACE helpline. PACE support and jobs fair events have been held at Partick job centre.”
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