Talks held on closure of Nestlé in Askeaton

Officials from the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, including Minister Simon Coveney, and Enterprise Ireland have held discussions with Nestlé officials from Switzerland in the wake of the announcement that the Wyeth baby formula production plant in Askeaton is facing closure with the loss of 550 jobs inside two years.
“The Minister stressed the importance of the site in the context of the local economy and the wider sector. The company assured the minister that its primary focus is to support colleagues in Askeaton at this difficult time,” Minister of State Neale Richmond said in the Dáil.
He continued: “The parties had an open and frank conversation about the reasons for the proposed closure and options available. The company outlined its decision being in the context of global market dynamics. The company further outlined its intention to engage in a meaningful consultation with colleagues over the coming months.
“The Minister and teams discussed plans to further engage with the company during the consultation time-frame and ensure that all supports are made available.
“Enterprise Ireland will work with the company to explore all options for impacted employees. Enterprise Ireland has had a long-standing and proactive relationship with Wyeth Nutritionals. They currently have ongoing and extensive engagement across three priority areas: Sustainability/Decarbonisation, Digital and Research and Development.”
Separately, Mr. Coveney said: “The market has changed very fundamentally. And so Nestlé made the decision that they’ve got to make changes here. But there is a long way to go yet before there’s any closure in West Limerick. And obviously, we’ll be involved in those discussions both with management and with the workers, and we’ll find opportunities, I hope, in this difficult situation.”
Unions are also in negotiations with management on potential redundancy packages.