Midland Pallet Trucks has urged factory workers and managers to remember the importance of workplace safety after appalling footage showing blatant and repeated disregard for food hygiene safety at 2 Sisters Food Group surfaced.
The repercussions of the secret footage obtained in a joint investigation by ITV and The Guardian have been devastating; along with a massive and hugely damaging media frenzy surrounding the company, 2 Sisters has had to close its West Bromwich plant where the footage was taken in order to retrain workers.
Phil Chesworth, Midland Pallet Trucks managing director, said: “The recent revelations coming from the scandalous footage obtained in the 2 Sisters investigation should serve as a reminder to all employees working for food production and manufacturing companies to keep hygiene in mind at all times.
“Aside from the massively embarrassing and potentially damaging amount of media coverage that’s engulfed 2 Sisters, tarnishing its reputation, the company has also had to close its factory to retrain employees. This will affect both the company’s profits and those supermarkets in the supply chain who rely on them for products.”
Big supermarket names including Tesco, Sainsburys, Marks and Spencer, Aldi and Lidl have all suspended deliveries from 2 Sister’s West Bromwich plant, which employs hundreds of workers. 2 Sisters Food group has said that suspending production at the scandal-hit plant will cost up to £500,000 a week but the incident is a ‘wake-up call’.
Specific violations captured in the investigation include manipulating kill dates, meaning that chicken may not be as fresh as it says on the label in supermarkets, and mixing old meat with batches of new meat.
Further offences caught on tape include unsold meat sent back by supermarkets being repackaged and sent back, as well as shocking hygiene failures including chicken dropped onto the floor being placed back onto conveyor belts, potentially contaminating further meat.
2 Sisters Food Group is one of the UK’s biggest food production companies, and processes around six million chickens every week, and the company is now facing a parliamentary inquiry as a result of the investigation.
Chesworth added: “We supply a lot of manual handling equipment to many factories including food production sites like 2 Sister’s West Bromwich facility. I’d urge all workers in the food industry to keep in mind the devastating repercussions that flouting hygiene safety could have for their company and their jobs.”
Midland Pallet Trucks supplies a range of manual handling equipment commonly used to move pallets and boxes in factories, including moving skates, pallet trucks and weighing scale trucks.