Tuesday 20th November 2018
Pensworth food service and wholesale business sales have grown by 48% – in excess of £20 million during the previous 2 years.
As a consequence of this rapid growth and our continued expansion we have been looking at a number of different options, which included further investment in the Dairy or relocating and building a new Dairy Factory. Following this lengthy review process, we have decided not to continue to invest in this side of our business and have made the difficult decision to no longer process milk and cream from our Dairy in Empress Road Southampton.
This decision was not taken lightly and it felt it was in the best interest for it’s, Employees, Customers, and Factory Suppliers to utilise the additional production capacity both at Watsons Dairies and Wells Farm Dairy. There is too much excess liquid milk capacity in the UK and this was also one of the deciding factors and this strategic decision will also assist both of the Dairies involved in the processing of our milk and cream. We are delighted that we have entered into this arrangement with both Companies.
Pensworth Dairy can utilise at Watsons Dairies a dedicated filling line to produce 80% of their milk and cream volume and there will be a TUPE transfer of processing staff, primary route drivers and dispatch loaders. Our farmer’s milk pool will continue to be managed by Pensworth Dairy and we have entered a tolling/contract pack arrangement with Watsons Dairies.
Watson’s dairy was acquired by Medina Dairies in 2004 and the site has been recently awarded a BRC ‘A ‘Grade accreditation reflecting an ongoing investment programme being undertaken at the site.
Our aim was to safeguard as many job positions as possible and with the Watsons Dairy only 12 miles from our Dairy it was an important part of our decision making process.
Our priority now will be to ensure our employees affected, settle in to their new roles and the suppliers to our factory are transferred across to Watsons Dairies as smoothly as possible.
We will continue to focus on building both our food service and wholesale business and will provide the quality service that our customers continue to expect.
There will be no change to our food service/wholesale distribution sites, our product distribution centre and the food service business that operates out of Empress Road Southampton will not be affected with the Dairy ceasing production.
Our Head Office will remain in Southampton and no employees will be affected within these businesses. We will continue to grow our business as well as recruiting additional personnel to support our growth expectation.