‘Perfect storm’ leads to reported closure of meats wholesaler

A “near perfect storm in the catering meats sector” has reportedly caused a Fylde coast wholesale business to close.

Clifton Quality Meats, owned by entrepreneur Simon Rigby, has shut its doors, according to the Blackpool Gazette.

In a letter to staff seen by the Gazette, Rigby allegedly said the £10m turnover business, which supplied restaurants and pubs, was hit by a triple blow which meant the business had to be put into administration.

Further on, he apparently stated that the company had been hit by the fall in the value of the pound thanks to Brexit which meant meat prices rose 15 per cent as exports became cheaper to foreign markets and imports more expensive.

It was also reportedly affected by the collapse of a rival meat supplier, Russell Hume, which went bust after a Food Standards Agency investigation, and noted the forthcoming impact of English Lamb weights forecast to be down 40% due to poor crop growth and fuel costs were higher.

The firm which had offices in Marton and in Wakefield, employed 70 people who were allegedly made redundant. Much of its work has been taken up by another firm, Clifton Buying Group, though, and according to the Gazette, Rigby said: “I feel sad to see such a long established local business ceased to trade. But more important than my feelings are the loyal employees and customers. I am therefore pleased to see Clifton Buying Group employing many of the staff and serving the customers requirements. As far as I know everyone has been reemployed.”

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Martyn Fisher
Martyn Fisher is the Editor of Better Wholesaling. Martyn can be found on Twitter on @BW_Martyn, or can be contacted via martyn.fisher@newtrade.co.uk and 020 3871 6490.

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