Danish Crown has announced a slaughtering capacity reduction at its Danish plants, cutting 15,000 slaughter pigs a week from its system in a move that will affect 280 employees.
The company blamed the move on “several years of falling slaughter pig production in Denmark” in revealing that “much of the slaughtering capacity” at its slaughterhouse in Ringsted will be closed down over the coming summer.
“For some time now, we have been transporting slaughter pigs across Denmark to utilise capacity in Ringsted, which is not a sensible solution,” said Danish Crown’s vice president production, Søren F. Eriksen. “Basically, not enough pigs are being produced on Zealand at the moment to warrant a slaughterhouse of this size.”
He said the only sensible way of cutting capacity was by closing down whole units, adding that the Ringsted move was the first time the company had closed down “half a slaughterhouse”.
“However, the Ringsted facility is designed in such a way that it now runs more slaughter lines than other slaughterhouses,” he said. “It is therefore possible to physically remove two of the slaughter lines and thereby also realise savings related to maintenance and other overheads. At the end of the day, it is all about ensuring that our farmer owners are paid the best possible price for their pigs so that we can continue to slaughter pigs in Denmark.”
Closing the two slaughter lines will be a two-step process, the first step being taken in mid-June and the second in mid-September this year.
“Should slaughter pig production start growing again on Zealand, however, this solution will make it possible to increase capacity at the slaughterhouse, possibly by introducing an evening shift,” he said.