Northern Ireland

124 jobs to go at Donegal bakery

At least 124 jobs are to be lost at Gallagher's bakery at Ardara in County Donegal.

Staff were told about the decision on Wednesday.

The company currently employs 189 people, but said the frozen bread section is unsustainable in the long-term.

Managing Director, Declan Gallagher, said there had been a "serious market contraction" in Ireland and the UK in recent years.

"The frozen business has been under review for some time," he said.

"We have now arrived at this decision, which has been taken with great regret."

Twenty-five of the remaining 65 staff will be offered redeployment to Dublin.

Negotiations are under way with a number of potential buyers for the fresh bread section.

Independent councillor Thomas Pringle said news of the job losses came as "a total surprise."

"This is going to be devastating for the community," he said.

"The knock-on effect will be huge, Gallagher's bakery is one of the area's biggest employers.

"This company was recruiting up to two weeks' ago, it's just devastating news altogether."

Gallagher's bakery produces its own soda and other breads, as well as the French Mill brand.

It sells to Tesco, Dunnes Stores and Harrods in London.