A BUSINESS buy out has helped to secure about 1,300 jobs in North East Wales.
Midlands-based 2 Sisters Food Group has agreed to buy VION’s poultry and red meat processing businesses in the UK, which includes the VION plant at Sandycroft in Deeside.
A statement from 2 Sisters says: “The acquisition secures a viable future for the businesses, as well as providing certainty to their UK supply chain, which is underpinned by British farmers.
“The acquisition will help to meet growing demand from 2 Sisters’ poultry customers and further diversifies the company’s offering to include red meat.”
The acquisition follows the announcement by VION’s Dutch parent company in November last year of its plan to exit its UK operations. It has 11 processing sites in the UK and approximately 6,000 employees. The company says it has suffered from challenging trading conditions, in particular in poultry, with the loss of a number of major contracts.
Ranjit Singh, chief executive of 2 Sisters Food Group, said: “We are delighted to be acquiring VION UK’s poultry and red meat businesses.
“They have faced significant uncertainty and tough trading in recent months, but today’s acquisition secures a viable future.
“With the majority of the operations being in Scotland and Wales, we are delighted the Scottish and Welsh governments are supportive of this deal and we look forward to working with them and developing a sustainable future for these businesses.
“This acquisition will safeguard a key supply chain for high quality British poultry and meat, offering reassurance to farmers in England, Scotland and Wales and upholding the quality and provenance UK customers and consumers deserve.”
Edwina Hart AM, Welsh business minister, said: “I welcome the announcement which safeguards the future of their operations in Wales.
“We have been working closely with VION and 2 Sisters to help secure this deal in order to sustain the future for the workers and the supply chain in Wales.”