Local paper strikes early succeess in campaign to save crab factory – Fishupdate.com

Local paper strikes early succeess in campaign to save crab factory Published:  17 October, 2011

A Norfolk newspaper has launched a campaign to save the Cromer Crab Company factory in Cromer, England – and it has already had some early success.

The North Norfolk News, part of the Archant Group which owns the Norwich-based Eastern Daily Press, has initiated “Claws Off” which has received widespread public backing and the support of politicians from all parties and TV celebrities including Delia Smith and Stephen Fry.

Now The Cromer Crab Company, which is part of the Findus Group, which also owns Young’s Seafood, has told the paper that the company was committed to keeping crab and lobster production in Cromer. Workers still fear, however, that this assurance does not mean there will be no changes at the factory which also produces prawns and other seafood products.

It is just three weeks ago that the company said it had entered a 90-day consultation period with staff at its shellfish processing site  which employs around 230 people. It also said that it was reviewing its manufacturing operations and warned that some of the jobs could be moved to Grimsby or to plants in Scotland, where the majority of Young’s UK employees work. The company said it was facing economic challenges arising from rising costs.

Norman Lamb, the Lib-Dem MP for the town, who met the company recently the owners were still open minded about the site’s future. He also revealed that one of Cromer Crab’s main customers had told the company it wanted the factory to remain in Cromer.

The Cromer plant was opened in 1980  and sold to Young’s in 2007. It takes most, if not all its crabs from local fishermen.