PRODUCTION at Fivemiletown Creamery looks set to cease “on the 7 June”, according to a worker’s union representative.
In the coming weeks the production of the iconic Fivemiletown Cheese will move to Co Antrim, over 60 miles away.
A spokesman for Dale Farm confirmed, “Dale Farm will relocate production of the main lines of our Fivemiletown cheeses to our facility at Dromona Cullybackey. However, the low volume Fivemiletown cheese retail lines will no longer be carried.”
The move to stop production at the site placed eighteen jobs at risk. Following a recent meeting, workers union representative, Liam Gallagher said, “Our main priority was to find the best possible outcome for the remaining staff there. The company have made the decision that they will close the plant on the 7 June, unfortunately, we are not going to be able to change their position on this.
“It comes down to us trying to get the best enhanced deal for the staff and to find suitable alternative employment. Most of those affected live in the local area and it wouldn’t be suitable for them to move to other plants.
“A lot of them, unfortunately, believe that the only option was to try and get a decent severance package. That’s what we are in the process of doing.”
Mr Gallager added, “The company did commit that for anyone who decided to move they would do their utmost to accommodate them.”
A spokesman for Dale Farm said, “Dairy co-operative Dale Farm took the decision not to renew its lease on the Fivemiletown Creamery site, with plans to relocate staff where possible and to move Fivemiletown cheese production to its facility at Dromona, Cullybackey. Dale Farm is currently engaged in an employee consultation process with all staff affected by these changes.”
When asked, a spokesman for Dale Farm failed to commit to a closure date. Rather, he said, “Production of Fivemiletown cheese at Fivemiletown Creamery will cease in early June 2019.”
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