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August 21, 2020

Greencore shuts Covid-hit Northampton plant amid wider community outbreak

Ireland-based private-label supplier Greencore has opted to close one of its factories in the English Midlands due to a coronavirus outbreak.

By Dean Best

Greencore has opted to close its factory in the town of Northampton in the English Midlands, a week after the Ireland-headquartered convenience foods manufacturer reported hundreds of coronavirus cases at the plant.

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The private-label giant said in a statement this afternoon (21 August) it hopes the site will “return to a substantial level of production within 14 days”. On 13 August, the ready meals, soups and sauces maker said 292 staff at the facility had tested positive for the virus amid a wider outbreak in the Northampton community. The same plant was also hit by Covid-19 in May.

Greencore said: “In consultation with the Department of Health & Social Care, Public Health England and other government bodies, it has taken the decision to temporarily cease production at its Northampton facility from the end of today as a result of the ongoing Covid-19 outbreak in the Northampton area and at the site. 

“This decision will allow all remaining colleagues at the site to self-isolate as a precautionary measure, and has been taken as part of the region’s ongoing efforts to reduce the spread of the virus and to keep colleagues safe.”

The London-listed company added that some of the production conducted at Northampton has been moved to other Greencore sites, and it is “working with the affected customer to help mitigate any production shortfall”.

Greencore estimates the temporary closure will have a “modest impact on adjusted EBITDA”. 

That metric rose 2.1% in the first half to GBP63.8m (US$83.6m) based on revenues of GBP712.7m. While the company did not provide EBITDA numbers late in July in a trading update for the third quarter to 26 June, it said reported revenue fell 34% to GBP240.6m.

It added in today’s statement: “Greencore has been in constant contact with PHE East Midlands, Northamptonshire County Council, Northampton Borough Council and other government bodies, who have been hugely understanding and supportive of the Group’s response. The Group will continue to work closely with them in order to bring the site back safely into production as soon as possible, as colleagues who are self-isolating begin to return.”  

Related Companies

Free Whitepaper
img

What is the impact of China’s Zero-COVID lockdowns on economic activity, consumer goods and the foodservice industry?

While wanting to protect the country from being overwhelmed by Omicron, China’s adherence to a Zero-COVID policy is resulting in a significant economic downturn. COVID outbreaks in Shanghai, Beijing and many other Chinese cities will impact 2022’s economic growth as consumers and businesses experience rolling lockdowns, leading to a slowdown in domestic and international supply chains. China’s Zero-COVID policy is having a demonstrable impact on consumer-facing industries. Access GlobalData’s new whitepaper, China in 2022: the impact of China’s Zero-COVID lockdowns on economic activity, consumer goods and the foodservice industry, to examine the current situation in Shanghai and other cities in China, to better understand the worst-affected industry sectors, foodservice in particular, and to explore potential growth opportunities as China recovers. The white paper covers:
  • Which multinational companies have been affected?
  • What is the effect of lockdowns on foodservice?
  • What is the effect of lockdowns on Chinese ports?
  • Spotlight on Shanghai: what is the situation there?
  • How have Chinese consumers reacted?
  • How might the Chinese government react?
  • What are the potential growth opportunities?
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Whitepaper.

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