Seafood switch: £6m investment for Five Star Fish confirmed as 70 to 100 jobs will be available

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 13 Jun 2016

A £6 million capital investment in Five Star Fish's Grimsby factory has been confirmed,after it won a £40 million contract from town rival Icelandic Seachill as part of major changes by Marks & Spencer. 

The Great Grimsby Business Park plant has won the coated work after the high street giant sought out three new suppliers, with bosses stating it has secured the future of the company. 

Five Star has won the majority share of what was £60 million of business, with other work heading to southern Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire. 

It is feared there could be up to 300 job losses at Icelandic, with factories also on the line. 

A spokesman for Five Star's parent company, Two Sisters Food Group, said: “We are delighted to win this contract, it is due to a lot of hard work from the team in Grimsby. The good news is it firmly secures the site for the future, and is going to generate somewhere in the region of 70 to 100 new jobs.

“Marks and Spencer business is quality business, and we have a proven track record of providing quality.”

Asked if those facing redundancy at Icelandic Seachill would be welcome, he said: “We will treat every application on its merits. I would think there will be a number of different roles available.

“We are also going to need an upgrade to the factory. There is going to be lots of activity to accommodate this.”

The work leaving the town includes deli produce, primarily prawn cocktail, transferring to Greencore in Northamptonshire, with Freshcook of Spalding – a Bakkavor business – taking the en croute orders.

All three are existing Marks & Spencer suppliers.

A spokesperson for Marks & Spencer said: “As we grow our food business, improving the quality and capacity in our food supply chain is an important part of our strategy. The decision to move products to three other suppliers is not one we have taken lightly, however we believe the move will further improve our fish offer and deliver new and exciting products for our customers.”

Five Star was launched on the docks by Grimsby Town chairman John Fenty in 1985, moving to purpose built premises 20 years ago, where it has expanded significantly. Five Star has changed hands on three occasions since he sold up in 2004, and has been under the control of the Boparan family's Two Sisters Food Group since April 2010, when it was bought out of administration from British Seafood. 

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