More than 80 jobs are under threat after it was announced that a meat processing plant in Co Tyrone is to close.
Foyle Food Group (FFG) which currently employs 82 workers at its facility in Derryloran Industrial Estate, Cookstown said it will close “on or by the end of August”.
The company, which has been established in Northern Ireland for 40 years, said it hoped to redeploy employees, where possible, amongst its other five sites in the UK and Ireland where it employs over 1,300 people.
A spokesperson said a rationalisation of processing capacity was necessary: “We regret the decision to close the Cookstown facility, but this is a necessary consolidation of the group’s operations across our larger and more modern UK facilities, where we have made significant investment in recent years.
“Focusing processing at these sites will allow the group to remain a market-leader within the competitive red meat sector.
“We understand the impact that this proposal will have on our Cookstown workforce. Consultation with staff will begin immediately and we hope to redeploy as many as possible to our other plants.”
Cookstown UUP councillor Trevor Wilson commented: “This news has come as a complete bombshell to the workers and their families and is dreadful news for Cookstown and the surrounding area.
“As chair of Mid-Ulster Council’s development committee I have asked for an urgent meeting with the owners and the plant’s management team.”