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Unilever to Shutter Iconic Colman’s Mustard Factory

January 8, 2018
A sign marking the entrance to the Colman's Mustard plant owned by Unilever. Image courtesy of Google Maps
A sign marking the entrance to the Colman's Mustard plant owned by Unilever. Image courtesy of Google Maps

A Norwich, England factory that has produced Colman’s Mustard for more than 160 years is set to close this March, Unilever, the site’s owner, announced on Jan. 4. The move impacts 113 jobs at the plant.

Production at the Norwich site will move to a factory at Burton-on-Trent, England, which produces Marmite and Bovril products, and a plant in Germany, the Financial Times reported.

Unilever’s announcement was apparently influenced by British soft drink manufacturer Britvic’s October 2017 decision to pull out of the site, which it co-owns with the Dutch-British multinational corporation.

25 new jobs are expected to be created in Norwich by the opening of a new Unilever facility used for processing and packing mustard powder, milling mustard, and processing mint, a Reuters article said. About 40 displaced workers will move to the company’s plant at Burton-on-Trent. The company said it will continue obtaining mustard and mint from Norwich-area sources for its Colman products.

Some observers viewed Unilever’s pledge to build a new facility in the wake of the plant’s closure as cold comfort.

“The government is disappointed Unilever has decided to close its Norwich plant, though we welcome Unilever’s commitment to mustard milling and mint production in Norwich,” a British government spokesperson told Reuters. 

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