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Dublin: 9°C Monday 25 October 2021

Bad news for Wexford as jobs lost at Yoplait factory

Although it doesn’t mean the end of the Yop.

Image: Difei Li via Flickr/Creative Commons

AS A RESULT of changes to the franchise agreement between Irish food giant Glanbia and French yoghurt makers Yoplait, production at a factory in Wexford is to cease, leading to about 50 job losses.

The redundancies, which Glanbia described as regrettable will all be from the firm’s facility in Inch.

“We recognise this is a difficult time for all those impacted and will be consulting with employee representatives in the period ahead,” Colin Gordon, CEO of Glanbia consumer products, said in a statement.

The move comes after Yoplait reacquired its own franchise from Glanbia for €18 million. Under the new terms, Glanbia will continue to distribute the Yoplait brand so popular products such as Yop and Petits Filous will remain on Irish shelves.

But Yoplait will take over production, marketing and account management.

The decision to let go of a brand it has controlled since 1973 signals a change in the current retail environment in Ireland. Falling yoghurt sales have been seen as competition from the organic sector has risen enormously. Costs have also remained high.

Glanbia said it wants to focus on the development of its core beverage and food brands. The global corporation has seen its profits rocket in the past few years as food prices across the world continue to increase. The agri-business sector is one of the shining beacons of Ireland’s economy at the moment so news of job losses in the industry comes as a surprise.

The company has said that redundancy packages will be generous. It also said that suppliers to the facility will have their milk collected as normal for processing at a separate factory.

Glanbia, which employs 1,800 in Ireland, processes 1.6 billion litres of milk at facilities in Ballyragget, Virginia, County Cavan, Ballytore, County Kildare and Drogheda, County Louth.

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