Heinz Tomato ketchup on a store shelf. Photo: Igor Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Kraft Heinz (KHC) has said it will bring the manufacturing of ketchup, mayonnaise and salad cream back to the UK over the next four years, in what will be one of the biggest investments in UK manufacturing since Brexit.
The company said on Tuesday that it would pump $ 199m (£140m) into the manufacturing facility.
It is the firm’s largest expansion in manufacturing outside of he US in more than two decades.
The plan, if approved by the US, will lead to the creation of up to 50 new full-time jobs.
It marks the first time Heinz sauces have been made in the UK since 1999 and would see a progression initially from sauces to soups, pasta and baked beans in the future.
The Kitt Green plant, northwest of Manchester, already makes 1.3 billion cans of food per year.
“The Kitt Green plan is a strong vote of confidence in post-Brexit Britain, aligning with the UK government’s leveling up agenda,” Kraft Heinz said in the statement.
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“The Kraft Heinz investment is a vote of confidence in the UK economy from a major U.S. firm and a boost that will mean jobs and growth for the local economy,” UK minister for investment Gerry Grimstone said in a statement.
The move comes amid bumper data from Markit’s PMI for the manufacturing sector in the UK. A surge in activity following the reopening of the economy meant conditions in the manufacturing sector improved at an unprecedented rate in May, as output growth strengthened and new orders rose at the quickest pace in the near three-decade survey history.
Looser pandemic restrictions and high levels of pent-up demand meant that the rapid revival in labour market conditions continued, with staffing levels also rising at a record pace.
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