Unilever is looking to cut jobs at a factory in Germany, according to local union representatives.
The Knorr owner is to axe “more than half of the current 175 jobs” at a soup-making facility in the town of Auerbach, NGG, the union representing the site’s workers, told Just Food.
Unilever is planning to close three production lines by October, the union said. Staff were informed at a meeting yesterday, it added.
In a statement, a spokesperson for Unilever’s business in Germany declined to comment directly on the prospect of job cuts.
However, the spokesperson said “strategic changes” the company planned to make at the Auerbach site would “secure the future of the factory in a highly dynamic market”.
“I can affirm that, through our strategic decisions, we successfully averted the shutdown of our eastern German facility in Auerbach, preserving 95 jobs in the process,” the spokesperson said.
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“This factory will maintain its operations, continuing to produce items such as dry soups. The details are currently being worked out internally and in confidential discussions with all parties involved.”
Thomas Lißner, managing director of the Dresden-Chemnitz region for NGG, said the union is planning to “build up massive pressure” to try to stop Unilever from downsizing the factory.
“We do not accept partial closures in instalments. The employees have been bending their backs for the company for decades and worked under maximum stress during Corona times,” Lißner said.
“Now the company wants to part ways with its workforce in pieces for reasons of profitability. We won't accept that ... we will build up massive pressure to achieve this in the coming weeks and months.”
According to the company’s website, the Auerbach facility produces foods including instant soups, ready meals and croutons.