Morrisons Organic apples packaged

Source: Morrisons 

The retailer said its fruit packing operation would be consolidated onto one site in Northamptonshire

Morrisons has announced plans to close a fruit-packing plant in Bradford, putting 456 roles at risk of redundancy.

The retailer currently operates two fruit packing sites, at Cutler Heights in its home city of Bradford and at Thrapston in Northamptonshire.

It said recent investments at Thrapston had “unlocked efficiency, capacity and space”, allowing it to consolidate its fruit packing operation at the Northamptonshire site.

“After very careful review and evaluation, we propose to move ahead with the consolidation at Thrapston in the second half of 2023,” the supermarket said.

Morrisons would “do everything we can” to re-employ the 456 staff under threat of redundancy at Cutler Heights, it added, while stressing it would also be creating 400 new roles at Thrapston and at its Wakefield distribution centre.

Moving its packing operation to Thrapston would “enable a range of efficiency savings, together with a reduction of circa 650,000 food miles annually”, Morrisons added.

It is proposing to repurpose Cutler Heights into a petfood manufacturing operation once it has closed but said the transition “will take some time”.