Haribo announces job losses in UK as production of Maom sweets moves to Germany

By Anthony Myers

- Last updated on GMT

Haribo's Castleford site in West Yorkshire, England. Pic: Haribo
Haribo's Castleford site in West Yorkshire, England. Pic: Haribo

Related tags Haribo Confectionery

Confectionary giant Haribo is planning to shed more than 200 jobs from its UK workforce under new plans that would see production of its popular Maoam sweets move to Germany.

The company currently employs almost 400 workers at its Pontefract site and more than 200 at the Castleford site, which will be hit hardest by move.

Under its plans, the company would slash its UK workforce by a third over an 18-month period 

The sweet manufacturer, which was founded in 1920, has been based in West Yorkshire for almost 50 years. 

GMB, the union for food and drink workers, will be entering into formal consultation with the company in the coming weeks - and said it would be fighting to save members’ jobs.   

Lynn Brook, GMB organiser said: "We're now awaiting further detail from the company on more than two hundred potential redundancies at Haribo's UK operation at the Pontefract and Castleford sites. It’s a bitter blow for these workers. 

“Such a reduction would see a loss of almost a third of the workforce and would do immense untold damage to this area. Haribo are a major local employer and have been operating at the Pontefract site for half a century. The workers here have been working through the pandemic and this news comes as a hammer blow.“

News of potential redundancies at Haribo UK comes just over a year after hiring 50 new staff to work on a lucrative contact to export confectionery to the US.

Haribo UK managing director Jon Hughes said: “We can confirm that we have started discussions with our colleagues about proposals to protect the long-term future of Haribo manufacturing in Yorkshire.

“The UK has become a manufacturing centre of excellence in the global Haribo network. But to protect this position, we must respond to significant rising costs and the demands of a highly competitive market.”

Brook said: “GMB will be working tirelessly to support members affected by the proposals and fighting to save jobs wherever we can. Our union will be in there for the long-haul to defend our members' employment and explore all avenues to protect livelihoods.”​ 

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