SPC WORKERS have been told their jobs are safe despite the company looking to can its IXL and Taylor’s brands.
The company has cited a decline in sales as their reasoning to sell off the jam and sauce brands in an effort to focus on better-performing products.
However local growers feel the move means local operations are one step closer to subsiding.
“I don’t think anything is safe in manufacturing, in my opinion it’s not likely they’ll stay in Kyabram,” KY D-Pak commercial operations manager Tony DePasquale said.
“It’s part of the track they need to go down to eventually sell the whole thing off.
“They’ve thrown a grenade in the room and it’s basically a way of saying ‘you can either stay here or move on’, but the outcome is going to be the same eventually.”
Workers at the factory have been promised their jobs will be safe, either under new ownership or should they choose to opt for a transfer to the Shepparton factory.
Mr DePasquale said the decision is not likely to affect growers, as the Shepparton plant has become the primary processing plant.
“Ever since Shepparton brought Ardmona, they’ve had the monopoly. Everything gets sent to Shepp now,” he said.
“From a growers point of view it’s bad, there’s no competition.
“But if you look at what’s happening – they’ve shut down Mooroopna, selling off IXL – it’s all going to come to a close eventually.”
As for when, Mr DePasquale said workers and growers are left in the dark.
“How long is a piece of string? It could be going for five or 10 years – or it could stop tomorrow. You just can’t tell.
“The writing is definitely on the wall and now it’s just about the company getting all of its ducks in a row.”