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Danish meat producer to close major factory and scrap 1,200 jobs

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Ritzau/The Local - [email protected]
Danish meat producer to close major factory and scrap 1,200 jobs
Danish Crown is to close its factory in Ringsted and scrap 1,200 jobs. Photo: Liselotte Sabroe/Ritzau Scanpix

Denmark’s biggest company in one of its largest industries, meat producer Danish Crown has announced the closure of its factory in Zealand town Ringsted, meaning 1,200 jobs will be lost.

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The company announced the closure of its Ringsted factory in a statement on Monday in which it also said workers whose roles will be scrapped will be offered training or positions at Danish Crown sites elsewhere in the country.

The closure of the Ringsted factory, scheduled for September, will mean that 1,200 jobs at that plant will cease to exist. Restructuring by the company will give 300 new jobs at Danish Crown factories in Jutland towns Horsens, Herning, Vejen and Sønderborg.

Danish Crown CEO Jais Valeur told newswire Ritzau that the company had taken a “heavy decision” to close the Ringsted factory.

“We have attempted to get ahead of the curve by taking a drastic step and not just adapting capacity to what we are seeing here and now but looking forwards and seeing that what is needed purely in terms of overheads is to close Ringsted,” he said.

The decision means the company will be able to avoid similar “adaptations” in future, he said.

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The company said that the decision is a consequence of the decline in the number of pigs slaughtered in the last two years, reducing the efficiency of its existing facilities in Denmark.

Future business models will increase focus on export of products such as bacon and pepperoni within Europe, Valeur said.

Pork production in Denmark fell by 17 percent between 2021 and 2023, according to Danish Crown's accounts.

This decrease has meant that slaughtering capacity at the company has been too large.

“There is greatly increased competition from China and the USA, so we are now focusing much more on the European market where we can see that there is demand for Danish bacon and pepperoni,” Valeur said.

The company said it expects to have enough jobs for employees who are willing to relocate to one of the group's four Jutland plants.

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