A wholesaler which called in administrators last week has closed its doors for good, with the loss of some 450 jobs.
Silverstar Foods, a Goudhurst, Kent-based Landmark member, traded as Turners Fine Foods. Only in April, the company, which supplied cheese, charcuterie, deli, and other upmarket foods to the hospitality and retail trades, had reported upbeat trading figures showing turnover increased by nearly 30% to £41.5m in 2015.
Back in March 2015, Turners merged with Chridstchurch, Dorset-based foodservice wholesaler Coastline Produce to create Silverstar, and had promised to create 100 new jobs. The two companies said in a statement at the time: “This is a fantastic development at such an exciting time in the food industry in the UK; restaurants, pubs and hotels are thriving, the coffee and café market is buoyant, people are shopping locally and our contract catering and institutional customers are continually striving to deliver healthy, inspiring solutions to an increasingly demanding consumer.”
The majority of job losses have been at Turners Fine Foods’ site in Goudhurst, where 311 members of staff were made redundant. Elsewhere in the county, 53 jobs were lost at the Tonbridge depot. Around 90 jobs were lost at former Coastline sites at Christchurch and the Isle of Wight.
Local newspaper, The Kent & Sussex Courier, reported that former staff of Turners Fine Foods are owed up to three months pay by law, according to the solicitors representing them. Morrish Solicitors is reportedly stepping in to provide compensation for former staff at Turners Fine Foods after they were made redundant at short notice.
More on this story in the August issue of Wholesale News.