Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Hall's of Broxburn factory may have rescue bids

Three parties are interested in bidding for a closure-threatened meat processing plant, the finance secretary has said.

Vion Food UK announced in July that it is consulting on the future of its Hall's of Broxburn factory, putting about 1,700 jobs at risk.

The consultation closes in just over two weeks.

The owners have turned down an offer from the Scottish government to buy and lease back the threatened food factory.

The company said accepting public money would only delay any potential decision regarding closure.

Uncertain time

Speaking at Holyrood, John Swinney said: "The company will continue dialogue with any interested buyers.

"As I understand it, there has been a further expression of interest in Hall's in recent days.

"I have already met with one of the groups of bidders personally in my office and my officials have spoken with two others, making three interested parties at this stage.

"The government is only too prepared to advance dialogue with those parties to find if there is a way we can maintain employment at the Hall's of Broxburn site."

Work is also being done to support staff at the factory at an uncertain time, Mr Swinney said.

Officials from Skills Development Scotland and Jobcentre Plus are at the site to give presentations to all workers there.

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