Jacob’s confirms Aintree biscuit factory to reduce, but not until December 2024

Jacob's crackers - made in Aintree

Biscuit conglomerate Pladis has hit back at claims from a trade union that hundreds of jobs are at risk in the run up to Christmas.

The GMB union said 361 workers have been told they are facing redundancy before Christmas, a claim the company refutes.

However, Pladis has confirmed that a consultation is taking place with a view to reducing the size of the Aintree site which employs 763 workers, but not until December 2024. 

“Jacob’s is one of the most iconic brands in the UK and has been around for over 100 years. To ensure it can remain for another 100 years, it is essential we address the current constraints we have at Aintree.

“We have therefore proposed some changes at the site which include a significant investment in the infrastructure but reducing the overall site footprint.

“This proposal will now be subject to consultation with our employees as it could result in a reduction in roles at Aintree from December 2024. We will do everything we can to support our colleagues through this uncertain time.”   

Unions voted for strike action in a bitter pay dispute in 2022 at the site, with one official describing the factory as one of the worst he has seen.

Lisa Ryan, GMB Regional Organiser, said: “This decision will leave many workers feeling frustrated and worried.

“In the run up to Christmas last year, GMB members at the site were on the picket line fighting for better pay. The workers won the pay they deserved.

“And for this Christmas their reward is redundancies. Jacobs have sunk to new lows.

“We will fight tooth and nail for the best outcome for Jacob’s workers.”

Last year Pladis cut jobs at the McVitie’s factory at Stockport and came under pressure from then local council leader Elise Wilson and Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham to be mindful of the heritage of the site.

The company confirmed that there are no further changes planned for Stockport. “The site has been key in the launch of our white chocolate digestive product this year”.