UK dairy group Robert Wiseman Dairies is considering the closure of its milk processing site in Okehampton in Devon, England and its distribution depot at Cupar in Fife, Scotland. A total of 137 jobs will be impacted.
However, in the event of closure, some of the 69 staff at Okehampton may be offered the opportunity to transfer to production roles at Wiseman’s state of the art dairy at Bridgwater. “We have created 500 jobs and invested £100m in Bridgwater to secure a competitive future for milk from dairy farms in the South West and this dairy is now supplying almost 10% of the nation’s requirement for fresh milk,” says Martyn Mulcahy, group operations director at Robert Wiseman Dairies. “At Okehampton, we have to address the reality, which is that the cost of processing milk and the investment required at the site is prohibitively high in comparison to our other dairies in the UK. In the current environment, we have little option other than to review the viability of the site going forward.”
Similarly, should Cupar be closed, some members of the 68 strong workforce may be offered the opportunity to transfer to distribution roles at the company’s Aberdeen and Whitburn depots.
Wiseman has commenced statutory 30 day formal consultation processes on the future of both Okehampton and Cupar, which will end on February 25th, 2011, at which point the company will work to complete its strategic review before arriving at a decision.