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Last Updated: Wednesday, 10 May 2006, 15:59 GMT 16:59 UK
Unions meet HP bosses over move
HP sauce

Union leaders are to meet bosses at US company Heinz over its decision to move production of its famous HP sauce from Birmingham to Holland.

About 125 jobs are expected to be lost at the Aston site when it closes in March 2007.

The T&G Union wants an explanation from Heinz bosses over Tuesday's announcement.

Heinz, which bought HP Foods last year, has said the move would improve efficiency and productivity.

But John Jordan, a spokesman for T&G, said that when Heinz took over the site it promised there would be no shift in production.

Don't buy HP Sauce and let the company hurt for this
Clare Short, MP

Forty MPs have signed a motion in the House of Commons calling on the firm to reconsider the decision.

Khalid Mahmood, MP for Perry Barr, said the workforce had worked hard to raise production and had performed to a high standard.

The motion urges the company to hold talks with unions and politicians to ensure a positive outcome for the workers.

Ladywood MP Clare Short also condemned the move, calling for a city-wide boycott of the vinegar-based sauce.

"The workers came to work, and they were sent home. No notice, no discussion.

"They turned up today weeping. We're saying in Birmingham we're going to all stop buying it.

"I think we should punish them. Don't buy HP Sauce and let the company hurt for this."

Unions described it as a "savage decision".

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