Morrisons acquires Cheshire meat-packing plant

Morrisons has announced an agreement to acquire a 105,000 sq ft meat processing facility in Winsford, Cheshire from Vion UK.

The site is a centralised fresh pork and lamb retail packing plant which has the capacity to expand into beef products and increase its overall existing production. 

The acquisition will give Morrisons even greater capacity as it continues to grow and greater control over the quality of the meat products sold in-store. 

Morrisons is the second largest fresh food manufacturer in the country, employing over 7,000 people, and a central part of its differentiation from its competitors is this “vertically integrated model”.

The food retailer owns a number of bakeries, meat processing facilities and produce packing factories, enabling it to have a greater control over the quality, cost and the supply of fresh food into its 476 stores nationwide. 

More than 300 staff at the facility in Winsford will have their jobs secured as a result of the deal, with the potential for further roles in the next year as the business grows.

This acquisition is the latest in a number of transactions to strengthen Morrisons’ manufacturing capabilities.

Morrisons has pledged to invest £200m over a three-year period to support the growth of the business and acquired Derby-based FlowerWorld last year, a specialist cut flowers business.   

Martyn Fletcher, Morrisons group manufacturing director, said: “Owning the manufacturing sites that produce our fresh food is crucial to Morrisons because it ensures we can control quality and keep down costs for our customers.

“As Morrisons continues to grow, it is important we have the facilities to support us. This facility is a high quality, purpose built meat processing factory and will be an ideal addition to the fantastic manufacturing sites we already own.”

Read more on Morrison’s

Morrisons’ new value range packs revealed: gallery

Supermarkets under fire over ‘value’ pack pricing

Shoppers steal Morrisons’ wire baskets due to Welsh bag charge

Morrisons rolls out own-label revamp in ‘2011′s biggest brief’