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23 April 2013, 11:18
Almost 300 jobs are going to be cut at Coca Cola, affecting drivers and warehouse drivers in Northampton as well as those at five other sites.
Union leaders have described the loss of the jobs as a 'devastating blow'.
Unite said sites impacted by the decision include Bristol, East Kilbride, north London, Northampton, Sidcup and Wakefield.
National officer Jennie Formby said: "This news will be a devastating blow for our members and their families, especially in the current economic climate of austerity, welfare cuts and now rising unemployment.
"It is too early to make a detailed analysis of the announcement. However, our immediate priority must be to get full details of the reasoning behind this decision and to examine what alternatives there could be for our members.
"Cola Coca Enterprises is a highly profitable and successful global company and we will be doing everything in our power to protect jobs.''
A company spokesman said: "Following a strategic review, we are proposing to end our direct delivery service in Great Britain.
"This service is primarily used by foodservice outlets and we have identified the need for a more efficient way of distributing our products to these customers.
"We have now started a full consultation on these proposals with our employee representative bodies and the Unite trade union. If these changes were implemented they could result in the loss of approximately 288 roles from a total workforce in Great Britain of 4,400.
"We do not make these proposals lightly and we will, of course, be looking to minimise redundancies as far as possible and will offer support to help colleagues through this process.''