Premier axes 900 jobs at bread division

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The Independent Online

Premier Foods is to close two bakeries and four distribution centres with the loss of 900 jobs as its bread division continues to be hit by soaring wheat prices.

The closures by the troubled Hovis maker is a result of Premier's decision to pull out of a £75m-a-year contract supplying the Co-op supermarket chain at what it revealed last month were wafer-thin margins. The business has been hit by intense competition and soaring wheat prices following global droughts.

More than 500 jobs will be affected in Birmingham, where Premier is closing its bakery and distribution centre. It is also shutting its bakery and distribution centre in Greenford, west London, resulting in the loss of nearly 200 jobs. The group said it would also remove 130 distribution routes.