Factory in Moreton in Wirral, which produces one in every four cups of tea drunk in the UK, is to cut both full-time and temporary staff. Tony McDonough reports
Merseyside tea firm Typhoo is to cut 76 staff from its 295-strong Wirral-based workforce.
From its factory in Moreton, Typhoo produces one in every four cups of tea drunk in the UK, importing tea leaves from Africa, India, Ceylon, Indonesia and Argentina through the Port of Liverpool.
Last year the company, which dates back to 1903, appointed Des Kingsley as its chief executive. Mr Kingsley has now revealed a restructuring plan that will see 55 full-time and 21 temporary staff lose their jobs.
Following a “detailed review” of its operations Mr Kingsley says the changes are necessary amid an “increasingly challenging trading environment”. Staff will now enter a 30-day consultation period and departments affected include production, engineering and administration.
In a statement, he said: “This decision has not been taken lightly. We recognise the impact of today’s announcement, but we have to take action if we are to remain competitive and build a strong and successful future for the business, in which there will be a renewed focus on efficiency, cost management, quality and service levels.
“We will offer every possible assistance to all those people whose roles will be affected and will work closely with relevant support agencies in the area to try and find alternative employment opportunities.”
Typhoo is also planning to introduce a new shift pattern, moving from three shifts to two. It will also be looking at improving operational effectiveness and efficiency across the business and looking to shake up its buying procedures.
“We have to implement such a robust programme if we are to achieve the required changes,” added Mr Kingsley. If we do, I’m hopeful that we can secure a positive future for Typhoo, one of Britain’s best-loved brands, and our other hot beverages, and for everyone who remains associated with them.”
Typhoo was founded by Birmingham grocer John Sumner. He bought 30 chests of tea and spent £200 on advertising, having decided to break new ground by packing the tea under a brand name. He chose the name Typhoo Tipps – with Typhoo based on the Chinese word for doctor.