BREAKING: Lanarkshire jobs threatened as Tesco phases out night shift and fresh meat counters

Dozens of jobs in Lanarkshire could be at risk as Tesco today announced it is laying off night shift staff, fresh meat counters and closing its discount chain.

More than 1,600 publications are under threat in its 317 stores across the country, as the supermarket giant plans to eliminate late-night stalls at several outlets and close its discount division, Jack’s.

Tesco said it needed fewer night staff because it was now stocking more shelves during the day.

The company said it will also close meat, fish and deli counters at stores with the “lowest demand” amid changes in customer habits.

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The supermarket giant plans to reduce night staff by switching 36 of its service stations to pay-at-the-pump service.

It is not yet known which, if any, Lanarkshire stores are on their ‘blacklist’ pending staff inquiry.

A Tesco spokesperson said: “After successful implementations, we have shown that by moving our overnight replenishment to daytime trading hours, we can ensure more colleagues are available on the shop floor to help customers at peak times. .

“Therefore, we have made the decision to move our replenishment from overnight to daytime at 36 large stores and 49 convenience stores.”

The supermarket has about 3,000 job vacancies and said it will try to move the affected 1,600 employees into these positions.

Andy Barr, retail expert and co-founder of online price tracking website, commented: “Retailers and supermarkets alike are doing everything they can to stay afloat during the aftermath of the pandemic. These tough times have seen no one safe in terms of their jobs, with stores as big as John Lewis and Debenhams similarly affected.

“The cost of living is rising dramatically and with this many households are trying to cut costs and waste where they can. Since food services like Hello Fresh, Gousto, and Odd Box are so convenient, time-saving, and wallet-friendly, the need to make a physical trip to a supermarket to find those fresh food counters isn’t as great as it was before.

“It is going to be an incredibly tense time in the coming weeks for anyone who works at Tesco as they wait to find out whether or not their fate with the company is secure. At a time when costs seem to be steadily rising and disposable income becomes a thing of the past for many, all we can do is hope that those who will be affected can quickly find work.”

Prices for the same items in a Tesco store have increased by nearly 20 percent in the two years prior to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Tesco UK and Republic of Ireland CEO Jason Tarry said: “We operate in a highly competitive and fast-paced market and our customers are shopping differently, especially since the start of the pandemic.

“We’re always looking at how we can run our business as simply and efficiently as possible, so we can reinvest in the things that matter most to customers. The changes we’re announcing today will help us do this.”

“Our priority now is to support our affected colleagues through these changes and, wherever possible, find alternative roles for them within our business.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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