Action group calls for new McVities plant to save jobs
Set to close: the McVities plant in Glasgow’s east end
Campaigners trying to save the McVities biscuit factory in Glasgow will today propose that a new cost-efficient plant is built on a nearby site.
The Pladis Action Group believes there is scope to create one of the most advanced biscuit manufacturing sites in the UK.
It said it had explored all potential options to maintain manufacturing in the city after the company announced in May that it planned to shut the east end facility with the loss of 468 jobs.
McVities has roots in Scotland stretching back 200 years, but its Turkish owner, a global snacking company, has blamed excess capacity across its UK sites and a need to ensure it can continue to invest in the success of the business.
The factory at Tollcross manufactures a range of notable products including Hobnobs and Rich Tea Biscuits.
So far the company has failed to be persuaded by pleas to drop its plans and has issued redundancy notices to employees.
It is understood that plant boss David Murray will not attend today’s meeting.
Economy Secretary Kate Forbes today said: “The Action Group have together worked at pace to identify and explore options to secure the future of these crucial manufacturing jobs in Glasgow.
“I would hope and expect the senior management at Pladis to now study the proposals carefully, and to engage with the Action Group on them in a constructive and thorough manner.”
Councillor Susan Aitken, leader of Glasgow City Council, said: “The partners across the Action Group have worked tirelessly over the last few weeks to pull this counter-proposal together.
The factory’s products include Hobnobs
“This proposal is compelling and would secure a future for Pladis in the city. I trust they will give it the consideration it deserves.”
GMB Scotland Organiser David Hume said: “We believe the proposal offers Pladis everything it needs to maintain manufacturing in the east end of Glasgow for the next generation, ensuring employment and opportunity for the local community that depends on it.
“It also represents months of hard work on behalf of the unions and action group representatives to support the workforce, who are fighting so hard for their futures. It sets out the way forward and everyone should be positive that Pladis will look favourably on it.”
Unite Industrial Officer Pat McIlvogue said: “The trade unions along with the Scottish Government and other key stakeholders have been working tirelessly behind the scenes to bring forward a commercially viable alternative to the closure of the McVitie’s plant at Tollcross.
“We believe that the proposal put forward to build a new factory on a nearby site will produce efficiency savings and make this one of the most advanced biscuit manufacturing sites in the UK.
“Unite is asking that Pladis, the owner of the factory, study and positively engage with us on this proposal because we believe that everyone can win from this most importantly the hundreds of jobs at stake in the local community.”