1. ITV Report

2 Sisters to close Witham poultry factory

It has been confirmed a food processing factory in Essex employing 528 people is to close.

2 Sisters' poultry factory in Witham will cease production in August.

The company launched a consultation over the future of the site in May.

Witham MP Priti Patel said she was "disappointed but not surprised by the news".

I hope that many will be able to find work at other sites run by the company or in related industries.

From all the discussions I have had with the company and employee representatives, it clear that there have been issues with the viability of the site and business for some time and all staff will have the opportunity to find alternative employment within the business.

I will continue to press the company on its plans to provide secure employment to local employees and ensure that people have employment security at this worrying time for them and their families.

– Priti Patel MP, Witham, Con
Priti Patel said that she will be pushing for the company to give employees other roles within the business. Credit: PA

In a statement, 2 Sisters confirmed that 100 jobs would be redeployed to sites elsewhere in the East.

"Unfortunately, we have not been able to identify a viable alternative to closure and therefore we anticipate that the final production will be by the end of August," a spokesperson said.

"We have been able to redeploy around 100 colleagues to our other sites in the region, and more hard work will continue until the end of next month to help assist people with other local opportunities both within and outside our wider Group.

"We would like to reiterate that the tough decision to cease operations at Witham is no reflection on the colleagues at site who have been dedicated, loyal and hardworking, and we would like thank all for their professionalism during a very unsettling time."