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November 14, 2022

Employees at Pladis plant in UK strike over pay

Pladis has switched some production of Jacob’s Cream Crackers to a manufacturer in Portugal to ensure supply.

By Andy Coyne

Workers at a Pladis plant in Liverpool in north-west England have downed tools in a dispute over pay.

Employees at the Pladis factory in the suburb of Aintree – which produces snack brands including Jacob’s Cream Crackers, Mini Cheddars and Jaffa cakes – walked out today (14 November) in what has been described by their trade union, the GMB, as a “permanent strike”.

Pladis – the global snacks arm of Turkey’s Yildiz Holding – has switched some production of Jacob’s Cream Crackers to a third-party manufacturer in Portugal to ensure supply.

A GMB spokesperson told Just Food “almost all” of the factory’s 750 workers have taken part in the walkout.

Workers at the Pladis site have been taking sporadic strike action since early September in pursuit of a pay award.

Eamon O’Hearn, GMB national officer, said: “These workers are rightly angry. They put themselves on the line to keep the company going during the pandemic. Now they need some help to get them through the cost-of-living crisis.

“But it’s falling on deaf ears. In fact, more than that, bosses are shifting an iconic British brand to Portugal to undermine their own workers.

“This kind of naked corporate greed in the run-up to Christmas is disgraceful.”

In response to the strike, a Pladis spokesperson said: “We regret that the GMB has decided to take this course of action, despite all of the efforts we have made to reach an agreement with the union. However, we want to reiterate that our door remains open to the GMB for further discussions with their representatives.”

In March, Pladis flagged potential job losses at a plant in Manchester, also in north-west England, having already announced the closure of a site in Tollcross in Scotland.

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