Cadbury axes 700 jobs

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The Independent Online

Cadbury is to axe 700 jobs at two of its factories under restructuring plans, the chocolate giant announced today.

The plant at Keynsham near Bristol is to close with the loss of 500 jobs, while some production is to be transferred from Bournville in Birmingham to Poland, hitting another 200 posts.

The company said changes were needed to achieve "greater supply chain efficiencies", but the announcement was attacked by the Unite union.

National officer Brian Revell said the firm was acting like a "private equity asset stripper."

The company said in a statement that it needed to reduce costs and operate more effectively so it could continue to grow and remain competitive.

There will be a phased closure of the factory at Keynsham from 2009 to 2010, with chocolate production moved to Bournville and a Cadbury site in Poland.

Some chocolate assortment production will move from Bournville to Poland next year, with the loss of 200 jobs between next year and 2010.

Cadbury said it hoped to achieve phased redundancies through voluntary means, adding that it was now entering detailed consultation with workers at both sites.