Talk of lay-offs in Athleague and Edgeworthstown as beef protests continue

Up to 100 workers who are involved in packaging of products at C&D in Edgeworthstown in Longford are in a meeting this lunchtime with management over potential lay-offs

Concern has been expressed that the 300 employees at the pet food facility, which has seen farmers demonstrating at its gates since Saturday, may be forced into temporary unemployment as result of the dispute.

The packaging facility has been vacant the last two days as no new produce has passed into the factory as a result of farmers demonstrating outside.

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The workers are represented at Epicom by Siptu and an update on the talks with management is due this afternoon.

Teresa Hannick is a SIPTU Manufacturing Division Organiser and she said that the union has no issue with farmers protesting, but is concerned at Meat industry Ireland pulling out of planned talks.

There are also reports this afternoon that Kepak workers in Athleague have been spotted leaving the plant with white envelopes in hand.

This comes in the wake of a statement by Meat Industry Ireland about an indefinite cessation of cattle slaughter.

According to the statement, the forced closure of affected sites is resulting in the temporary lay-off of “thousands” of employees.