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Jobs go as dairy rescue bid fails

12 June 09 18:16 GMT

Up to 290 jobs are to be axed after receivers failed to reach a deal to save a Tyneside dairy.

The Dairy Farmers of Britain (DFB) said it was closing its Blaydon operation on Friday, a week after the UK-wide co-operative went into receivership.

There were hopes for an 11th hour rescue, but it fell through.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) said it was continuing efforts to sell 19 depots related to the Blaydon dairy, with a further 329 jobs in the balance.

DFB went into receivership last week, putting 2,000 UK jobs at risk.

'Continuing losses'

The agricultural cooperative has 1,800 member farmers who supply over one billion litres of milk a year, and is responsible for 10% of UK milk production.

Stephen Oldfield, joint receiver and manager of DFB, said they had worked "very hard" to find buyers for the various parts of the DFB business.

"The liquids business has suffered continuing losses and recent withdrawal of customers has compounded the problem," he said.

"In the absence of buyers, we have already had to close the Lincoln and Bridgend dairies.

"There were urgent attempts today to secure a rescue deal for Blaydon with support from One North East and Defra, but the deal collapsed at lunchtime today when the buyer withdrew."

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