Fears over former Heinz plant’s future
SERIOUS CONCERNS ABOUT PLANT BUT TAFC REFUSE TO CONFIRM CLOSURE
THERE are serious concerns about the future of The Authentic Food Company (TAFC), formerly known as the Heinz factory.
Fears have been mounting over recent weeks around the Finnabair plant, with a number of local TD’s raising the concerns of staff.
Tanaiste Simon Coveney also acknowledged the concerns in the Dail last week.
Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick raised the issue, saying; ‘As the situation stands, there is no production planned past 26 October. The parent company in Manchester refuses to confirm closure. The company has stated that the environment is ‘challenging’ but there is no communication whatsoever with the employees.’
He added: ‘ There are over 180 employees there and those families are panicking at the moment. Dundalk has had plenty of jobs in the last years. However, it is even better to save jobs. I urge the Tánaiste to help us please.’
Tanaiste Simon Coveney responded: It is clearly an important one for Dundalk. I am sure the Government and State agencies will do everything they possibly can to work with the company. If there are difficulties that we can help with, I am sure we will be very proactive on that. I assure the Deputy that I will raise the issue personally with the Minister, Deputy Humphreys.’
Meanwhile, Louth TD Declan Breathnach stated that ‘rumours about the imminent closure of The Authentic Food Company need to be either confirmed by the parent company in Manchester or put to bed and refuted. It is not fair to staff at the plant and their families, to be hearing rumours regarding the imminent closure of the factory, and that production is to cease after October 28th.’
Sinn Fein Councillors, Ruairi OMurchu and Anne Campbell also raised ‘serious concerns’ after meeting with staff, and stated they had written to the company seeking assurances.
The Argus has contacted the company for comment on the issues raised, but received no response.
There are fears for 180 jobs at the Dundalk plant.