Major jobs boost for Hull as Cranswick develops £31m breaded poultry facility

Food products group Cranswick is providing an economic boost for Yorkshire by developing a breaded poultry facility in Hull.

Cranswick said that work on the £31m development is progressing to plan with the plant due to be commissioned early in the new financial year.

In a statement, Cranswick said: "We are making good progress in developing the new business pipeline in this attractive and meaningful category."

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Last year, Adam Couch Cranswick’s chief executive, said the new breaded poultry facility would create 200 jobs at an absolute minimum.

Cranswick was formed in the early 1970s by farmers in East Yorkshire

He added: "We are always looking to hire good people. East Yorkshire is at the heart of what we do."

In a trading statement, Cranswick said: "UK retail demand remained strong during the quarter, reflecting the continued shift towards greater in-home consumption resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Performance over the festive trading period was robust and comfortably ahead of the same period in 2020, reflecting a well-executed Christmas plan, supported by exemplary service levels to our customers, with unprecedented industry wide labour and supply chain challenges continuing to be well managed. Substantial and widespread cost inflation was proactively mitigated through tight cost control and ongoing recovery."

Cranswick said that Far East export sales were, as anticipated, lower than the same quarter last year due to market prices falling back from the elevated levels experienced over the previous two years and the ongoing suspension of its Norfolk primary pork processing facility’s China export licence.

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The UK pork sector continues to face operational and commercial challenges with the supply of pigs at times exceeding demand and processing capacity, Cranswick said

Cranswick is working with the wider farming community to reduce the backlog of pigs on farms and, in the current financial year, has increased the number of pigs processed.

The statement added: "Given the magnitude of this industry issue, we continue to lobby the government for sector support to help alleviate the backlog, including the reinstatement of Chinese export licences and addressing the acute shortage of skilled butchers."

Adam Couch, CEO of Cranswick commented: “We have delivered another strong quarter of growth during which we have supported our customers by delivering excellent service levels to ensure full availability of our products.

“Our performance, which built on the positive and sustainable progress delivered in the first half of the year, reflected the unstinting commitment and dedication of our colleagues across the business and I thank them for their continued support in what continues to be an incredibly challenging operating environment.