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EU referendum: Moy Park tells its workers it is eager to stay in EU

By Margaret Canning

Published 16/06/2016

The Craigavon-based firm is one of the UK’s and Europe’s biggest agri-food companies
The Craigavon-based firm is one of the UK’s and Europe’s biggest agri-food companies

Poultry giant Moy Park, which employs large numbers of EU workers, has said it is strongly in favour of the UK staying in the EU.

The Craigavon-based company is one of the UK's and Europe's biggest agri-food companies.

It employs approximately 12,000 people in Northern Ireland, England, France, Holland and the Republic of Ireland.

Around 4,000 of its staff work in its facilities in Craigavon, Dungannon and Ballymena.

The firm would not say yesterday how many of its staff were from outside the British Isles.

But the company has been a major employer of people from Poland, Lithuania and other EU countries since their nations joined the EU in 2004, when it expanded from 18 members to 28.

Yesterday, the firm said it would be informing employees of its views. But a spokeswoman said it would also emphasise that how staff voted next week was a personal matter.

Three months after Business Telegraph first revealed Moy Park's pro-EU stance, its chief executive Janet McCollum said: "We are a European business and Europe is our market - and we are strongly in favour of the UK remaining within the EU.

"Remaining in the EU gives businesses greater certainty about the future.

"Within the EU, we have open access to 27 markets and 500 million consumers.

"Any move away from the free market in which we currently operate could increase tariffs, add administrative burdens and limit export opportunities.

"The EU has imperfections, but it is also a massive market which offers export security, and it is our view that the UK should remain within it."

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