RANDERS, DENMARK — European pork processor Danish Crown recently announced it would close a facility near Boizenburg, Germany.

The company said the plant, which employs 200 people, produced meat at the facility for almost 20 years. However, in the next six months, Danish Crown will move operations to its abattoir in Essen, southwest of Bremen.

“We simply have to make more money in Germany,” said Jais Valuer, group chief executive officer of Danish Crown. “Therefore, we believe it is time to shift the focus from pure large-scale production to a more agile setup. The abattoir in Essen has an important task in supplying our own processing facilities with raw materials, and at the same time production will be adapted so that we can produce exactly the goods that our customers in both Germany and the rest of Europe demand from week to week.”

Other factors cited by the company included the drop in pork production in Germany since African Swine Fever began in the country in the fall of 2020. 

“From being one of Europe's leading exporters of pork, Germany has now been reduced to a country with a focus on the domestic market,” the company stated. “Danish Crown is now taking the consequence and is reducing its production capacity in Germany.”

Currently, Danish Crown is negotiating with management in Boizenburg and the work committee about the conditions for transferring employees to other facilities in the company.

“It is a sad situation, because there are many skilled and loyal employees at the facility in Boizenburg,” said Per Laursen, production director at Danish Crown. “To the extent that it is possible, they will be offered a job at one of our other facilities.”

Following negotiations, Danish Crowns plans to wind down production in Boizenburg and sell the buildings. 

Danish Crown stated that it currently has about 3,400 employees in Germany.