Russell Hume, a meat supplier, has collapsed into administration resulting to the loss of approximately 300 jobs.
Jamie’s Italian and JD Wetherspoon were among the former customers of Russell Hume who ended their contracts with the company last month following the launch of a probe into an alleged “serious breach” of rules on safety by the Food Standards Agency.
At the time, Wetherspoon stated that Russell Hume was “unable to demonstrate compliance with food hygiene rules at its locations.”
On Monday, administrators KPMG said that 266 Russell Hume employees would be made redundant. Another 36 employees are anticipated to stay on at the company in order to help wind the firm down before they are also made redundant.
The directors of the company said in a statement that regulators had produced “impossible trading conditions” for the firm.
They stated: “After careful reflection, we have decided the best thing for the company and its creditors is to put Russell Hume into administration.”
They said that the said decision had been “heartbreaking.”
The directors stated: “We will continue to work with the FSA with regards to the issues it raised, but we still feel its action has been out of all proportion to the concerns it says it has identified.
“Had it worked more closely with us in the crucial early stages of the situation, then more than 300 jobs may not have been lost.
“The fact that its investigations have become industry-wide and a number of other firms have also had issues strongly suggests there is a lack of clarity in the industry and in current FSA guidelines.
“Prior to this, we had a long, unblemished record for supplying quality meat products.”
The firm operated across six production sites that are located in Birmingham, Liverpool, Boroughbridge, London, Fife, and Exeter. It supplied meat to restaurants, pubs, and hotels across the United Kingdom.
A partner at KPMG, Chris Pole, stated: “The recent product recall and halt in operations has caused significant customer attrition and trading difficulties, which in turn has led the directors to take the decision to place the company into administration.”
Pole said that KPMG would be then be “seeking buyers for the business and its assets.”