American food company, Kraft Heinz, has reportedly announced that it will be investing a sum of £140 million into a processing unit on the fringes of Wigan. The move signifies one of the largest investments in manufacturing in the United Kingdom since Brexit.
For the record, the existing Kitt Green plant of the company is the largest food manufacturing facility in Europe. The expansion of this unit would see the firm’s salad cream, mayonnaise, and ketchup brands produced in Britain for the first time in a period of over two decades.
As per Gerry Grimstone, the UK Minister for Investment, the Kraft Heinz investment represents a vote of confidence in the UK economy from a major company in the U.S. and a boost that will mean growth and jobs for the local economy.
The plans mark the largest investment of Kraft Heinz in an existing manufacturing site located outside the United States in more than two decades. The company had ended its production of the sauces in the United Kingdom in the year 1999.
Kraft Heinz’s current move is still under review at the U.S. headquarters of the company. The decision would create 50 full-time jobs at the factory, which makes 1.3 billion food cans in a year. As stated by Heinz, its investment will be directed towards upgrading manufacturing technology and equipment at the plant.
The Chicago-headquartered firm has been elevated by the COVID-19 pandemic, given that more people prefer to eat at home amid lockdowns. Back in April 2021, Kraft Heinz beat first-quarter profit and revenue estimates as consumables continued with their year-long escalation.
Before the pandemic in 2019, the firm witnessed its shares plummet by over a quarter after posting a huge loss and unveiling that it was the focus of a federal investigation. The loss reflected alterations in consumer trends away from processed foods to healthier options, acknowledged the firm.
These alternatives clashed directly with some of the most well-known products of the company comprising Kool-Aid, Jell-O, and Oscar Mayer hot dogs.