April 20, 2017 / 4:44 PM / in 3 years

Diageo cutting jobs in Scotland ahead of Brexit - union

Workers talk to each other on the production line at the Diageo owned Shieldhall bottling plant in Glasgow, Scotland March 24, 2011. REUTERS/David Moir

LONDON (Reuters) - Alcoholic drinks giant Diageo (DGE.L) plans to cut roughly 100 jobs in Scotland, at a time when Britain’s workforce is facing uncertainty over the nation’s impending exit from the European Union.

Diageo, the world’s largest spirits maker and home to Johnnie Walker Scotch, Smirnoff vodka and Tanqueray gin, said on Thursday that it reviewed its European bottling plant footprint following the disposal of its wine business and subsequent end of wine bottling contracts.

It said the review was currently estimated to impact around 100 roles in Scotland, towards the end of the year.

“We will now enter a period of consultation with our employees and their representatives to discuss this and all these proposals of the business in greater detail,” a Diageo spokeswoman said.

The Scottish arm of Britain’s GMB union, which first reported the news on its website, said workers and unions were told on Thursday that there would be 70 redundancies at Diageo’s Leven bottling plant in Fife and 35 at its Shieldhall site, near Glasgow.

Diageo has another European bottling plant in Italy.

The GMB union, which says it has 639,000 members in various sectors, said it warned the UK government’s Scottish Secretary David Mundell earlier this year about the need for special measures to protect Scotland’s drinks manufacturing sector amidst the backdrop of Brexit uncertainty.

Scotch whisky is one of Britain’s largest food and drink exports.

Reporting by Martinne Geller; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle

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