Canadian food group Maple Leaf Foods is to close a prepared meats facility in British Columbia, resulting in 155 job cuts.

The facility, located in Surrey, will close on 30 September, the firm said yesterday (1 February). Operations will begin to “gradually wind-down” from May.

Maple Leaf said production will be consolidated at its prepared meats facilities in Saskatoon, Manitoba and Ontario where there is available capacity, after completing some upgrades. 

The Surrey facility produces a variety of prepared meat products, including ham, sliced meats, sausage and deli products, primarily for retail and foodservice customers in Western Canada.  

Last year, Maple Leaf set out a five-year plan to restructure its processed meats and bakery operations to boost margins.

“The closure of the Surrey plant is an important step towards consolidating our manufacturing at fewer, dedicated scale plants, resulting in reduced supply chain costs and better efficiencies,” Rick Young, executive VP of consumer foods said. “While necessary, we regret the impact on our skilled and dedicated employees. We will recognise their service and will support their transition to new employment.” 

The firm said staff will be encouraged to seek employment at other Maple Leaf facilities, including three in British Columbia. 

Earlier this month, Maple Leaf announced plans to close its Laval bakery in Quebec. Two months earlier, the company revealed plans to close a prepared meats facility in Nova Scotia.