Greencore has been accused of breaking UK employment law by local trade union Unite.

The union claimed today (12 July) Greencore had issued notices at its site in Hull to end contracts and re-employ workers on worse terms and conditions before the end of a period of consultation.

Staff have been threatened with redundancy and with being replaced with agency workers, Unite said. It claims Greencore is threatening to lay off 236 staff and employ agency workers to replace them.

Unite said Greencore is breaching the Ethical Trading Initiative on a series of counts, including intimidation of the workforce. It also said Greencore has abolished extra payments for overtime, shifts and bank holidays.

"Unite will not accept companies that break the law, attack union rights and the terms and conditions of the lowest paid workers in society. It would be better for the company to sit down with Unite and resolve the outstanding issues through constructive talks rather than face the full force of a major campaign against it," Unite national officer Jennie Formby said.

Officials at Greencore could not be reached as just-food went to press.