A LARGE number of jobs have been cut at Morrisons Gadbrook Park, the Guardian understands.

The manufacturing and distribution site off the A530 in Rudheath housed a ‘purpose-built dual facility’ manufacturing fruit and veg.

The facility employed 600 staff and prepared 120 million packs of fruit per year.

The supermarket company has now closed the fruit packing facility and as a result, hundreds of jobs were put at risk of redundancy.

A spokesman for Morrisons told the Guardian: "We recently proposed some changes to how we operate our Gadbrook manufacturing site to ensure we continue to serve our customers better. Following the consultation process some positions have been removed and the fruit room has now closed."

The Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers (USDAW) consulted with Morrisons over the proposals and secured voluntary redundancy for many workers, with some also being redeployed elsewhere the company.

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Sources have told the Guardian that the final number of redundancies was more than 200, but Morrisons will not confirm how many jobs have been lost.

Carl Turner, USDAW area organiser, said: “Following proposed changes in operations at Morrisons in Gadbrook Park, USDAW entered into consultations with the company where we challenged the business case.

“USDAW and Morrisons met collectively through this process and consultations were productive. For the vast majority of staff affected we were able to secure a voluntary redundancy package or redeployment within the business.

“We now look forward to working with the company in the future on possible investment in the Gadbrook Park site, that we hope in time will lead to new employment opportunities.”