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First Milk have confirmed their Wrexham packing plant will close by the end of May 2014.

The proposal to close the site follows the loss of a significant customer contract with ASDA, and a consequent strategic review which concluded that it is no longer economically viable for the business to keep the site at Maelor operational.

However today it was confirmed that the factory will close. In total 230 jobs will be lost as a result of the decision.

Back in October employees were informed of the businesses proposal to close the Maelor cheese packing plant.

First Milk packs around 30,000 tonnes of cheese a year, with business from ASDA accounting to about 20,000 tonnes worth.

Speaking about the factory closure, Susan Elan Jones MP described the decision to close the factory as a ‘tragic announcement, adding: “This is a massive blow to our area and a bitter disappointment for a very loyal and skilled workforce. This has happened because a large supermarket chain, Asda, has decided to switch suppliers.

“It is vital that all our efforts are now concentrated on trying to secure new jobs for the redundant workers. However I also think wider questions need to be asked about the practice of our major supermarkets, who take an ever-increasing share of our retail market.

“Put bluntly, supermarkets can give and they can take away. If ever there was a warning for our local towns and villages of the importance of supporting and nurturing small, independent shops, today’s tragic announcement provides one.”