Hot cakes: Greggs has more stores in the UK than either McDonald’s or Starbucks
HighStreet bakery chain Greggs is laying off several hundred employees as it transfers production of its sausage rolls and doughnuts to robots.
Greggs, which has more stores in the UK than either McDonald’s or Starbucks, opened 90 stores last year.
Greggs would not give a specific number on how many jobs will go but ‘several hundred’ staff applied for voluntary redundancy.
The job losses are part of an overhaul to Greggs’ supply chain which will see it automate manufacturing at fewer sites.
In Glasgow it has extended an existing site to make yum-yums and this year is converting a Newcastle bakery to make doughnuts.
The programme is expected to be completed by 2020 with £95million worth of investment.
Profits were dented as a result of the investment last year, slipping 4 per cent to £71.9million, but sales rose by 3.7 per cent to £960million in 2017.
Healthy options such as ham, egg and potato salads and granola and strawberry yoghurt form around 10 per cent of all sales.
Roger Whiteside, chief executive, said : ‘2018 will be the peak year for investment in our supply chain as we create the platforms for further growth.
We also plan to open a record number of new shops as we implement our plan to grow Greggs as a leading food-on-the-go brand.’
Greggs is planning to open up to 130 stores this year with more near offices and in train stations.