More than 900 jobs are under threat at Young’s Seafood factories in Scotland after the loss of a major contract with Sainsbury’s.
Nearly half of the company’s Scottish workforce at facilities in Fraserburgh and Grantown-on-Spey could lose their jobs. Last month, Unite union bosses warned of job losses after Young’s chief executive Pete Ward said its contract to supply salmon to Sainsbury’s supermarkets would end in November this year.
Young’s is now considering closing its Fraserburgh and Grantown-on-Spey plants and moving the work to Grimsby, Annan and Livingston.
Pete Ward, chief executive of Young’s Seafood Limited, said of the announcement: “This process will not be easy, but we have to face some tough decisions and we believe the proposals, outlined today, could deliver a significantly more sustainable manufacturing footprint than other potential consolidation options.
A spokeswoman said: “Since the Sainsbury’s decision, Young’s Seafood Limited has been considering several options and is today proposing the future integration and servicing of remaining contracts into other manufacturing sites in Grimsby, Livingston and Annan.
“We believe this proposal delivers a significantly more sustainable manufacturing footprint than other potential consolidation options.
“If, following consultation, this proposal is implemented, it is likely to result in the closure of the Young’s Fraserburgh and Spey Valley sites in or after November and the loss of more than 900 jobs.
“The proposal could also result in the transfer or creation of approximately 200 jobs across Young’s sites in Grimsby, Livingston and Annan.”
A spokesman for the supermarket chain said: “We have been carrying out a thorough review of our Scottish salmon suppliers to ensure we can offer our customers the best products possible.
“As a result of the supplier tender, we have given advance notice to Young’s Seafood they will no longer pack and process salmon products for us. However, Young’s will continue to supply us with fish, including cod and haddock.”
Mr Ward added that the announcement “does not reflect on the skilled teams at Young’s Fraserburgh and Spey Valley”.
Young’s currently employs around 3000 people at eight manufacturing sites in Grimsby, Fraserburgh, Livingston and Annan.