UK food producer Grampian Country Food Group is to close a chicken plant at Newbridge near Edinburgh, with the loss of 547 jobs.

The work carried out at the plant will be transferred to other facilities at Coupar Angus in Perth and Kinross and Cambuslang on the outskirts of Glasgow, the group said. The Newbridge plant had focused on preparing in-flight meals for airlines, but the downturn in air travel following the events of 11 September last year had hit demand.

“We must ensure that our business becomes more efficient and robust enough to face the continual developments within our marketplace,” said chief executive officer Malcolm Smith.

The company has prepared redundancy packages for the employees affected.

Grampian Country Food Group acquired the Newbridge plant in 1998 from the Marshall Food Group.