I’ve got a personal connection with the Cadburys factory at Keynsham, known as Somerdale, because it’s where I have been doing my Project Management courses for Bath Council for a few years now.
It was a welcome ray of hope when Kraft said they might keep it open (only ‘might’, I don’t think they ever promised it) and a real shame that it’s still going to close. It looks as if Kraft made this half promise in order to smooth the unpopular take over, and now that they have got Cadburys they can carry on with the original plan to close the place (made by Cadburys, remember) so that the chocolate can be made slightly cheaper in Poland, (though not as cheaply as planned since the recession has made the UK almost as cheap as Poland now, and the Keynsham land is not as valuable to sell any more).
But what’s made me write this is the angry grilling given to the Kraft representative, Marc Firestone, today.
a) Kraft didn’t send anybody senior, just some PR bod, who was probably paid loads to go over to the UK and soak up the shit.
b) After a day of words, nothing has changed. Maybe we feel better for having seem them let off some steam on our behalf, but that’s not worth much in the long run. Do the apparenlty angry politicians really care? In fact, why should they, it doesn’t really affect them. They just have to look as if they do.
c) Kraft have promised not to close anywhere else for two years. Only two years! It’ll take them that long to decide what to close and get it organised, so we gain nothing from that promise. they probably would have left it that long anyway, just for PR reasons if not for logistical ones.
So what have we got – a bunch of hot air and worthless promises. What was the point of that? Either the English politicians were fooled by Kraft, who are just carrying on doing what they planned and soaking up the temporary flak, or the politicians knew it was just a charade for us the public. Either way, what a load of crap!
Cadburys – old baddies
Kraft – new baddies
Politicians – fooled, or manipulative
I suppose we should expect this sort of thing by now…