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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 November 2007, 16:55 GMT
Food processing plant will close
Chickens
Chicken products are made at the plant
The poultry processing company Moy Park is to close its plant in County Down.

The 228 employees at the Moira factory were told production will move by next spring. The firm blamed cheap imports and reduced demand for the move.

More than 200 employees whose jobs are affected will be offered similar jobs at Moy Park's Craigavon base.

There may also be relocation opportunities for 25 administrative staff. Moy Park employs 3,500 people in Northern Ireland.

When the Moira factory closes next spring that will leave two Northern Ireland factories; Dungannon where it processes more than 1.25 million chickens a week and Craigavon where it processes much of its chicken into portions and ready meals.

BBC Northern Ireland rural correspondent Martin Cassidy said: "Two factory closures in two years may not sound like progress but Moy Park is emphasising that to compete with chicken suppliers from south America and the Far East it needs to be as efficient as possible.

"And by closing Moira and transferring the work to Craigavon, there are cost savings to be made.

"Moy Park says in today's market, it's price which drives the buying decision above all other factors."

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