Sandwich maker Greencore Group has hit the headlines this morning after the Daily Mail revealed it had been forced to look for workers in Eastern Europe for its new factory because Britons won’t do the job.According to the newspaper report, headlined ‘Is there no one left in Britain who can make a sandwich?’, Greencore bosses are making the journey to Hungary this morning to recruit new staff for the new factory in Northampton, which is due to open in 2016.The firm, which makes around 430 million sandwiches a year and supplies sandwiches to Marks & Spencer, Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Asda, admitted that it would have to recruit the majority of the 300 workers it needs from overseas. It said this was due to people in the UK being unenthusiastic about the job roles.Allyson Russell, Greencore’s human resources director, told the paper that the company had tried to recruit in the UK, but that it was “not always the kind of work” people wanted to do.A Greencore spokesperson said: “Greencore employs around 1,100 colleagues in Northampton and is currently looking to recruit a number of new staff. “We have already started a range of recruitment initiatives locally and have been pleased with the response.”The new £35million factory is due to open in early 2016 in in Northampton.The average wage in Hungary is just over £7,000. Even if workers coming here were on the minimum wage, they would earn almost double that at £13,520 a year.The sandwich company completed the disposal of its foodservice desserts business, Ministry of Cake this year, for upfront cash consideration of £8m and deferred consideration of up to £3m.
The bill to give California voters a louder voice in the 2008 presidential campaign by moving up the state’s presidential primary from June received its final legislative approval Tuesday and now only awaits what should be a swift signature by the governor. The historic vote will elevate California as a key player in choosing the next presidential nominees, said Assembly Speaker Fabian Nu ez, D-Los Angeles. The bill, SB 113, which already cleared the Senate, was approved on a party-line vote, 46-28, with Republicans objecting to the estimated $60 million to $90million price tag of a third election and Democrats’ refusal to add language guaranteeing that counties would be reimbursed for the cost. “Our voice will travel across the nation,” Nu ez said, “because we are putting California squarely in the front, center stage of the national political debate.” But the push for an earlier presidential primary also has been met with some political cynicism. Legislative leaders have sought to attach the primary to other reforms, including a change in term limits, redistricting and possibly campaign finance rules. Critics contend the real reason for an early primary is to also place the term limits measures on the Feb. 5 ballot, which could extend the power of Nu ez and Senate president pro tem Don Perata, D-Oakland. “They’re not doing this to get voters more information; this is not about civic engagement at all,” said David McCuan a political science professor at Cal State . “It’s clear the motivations are crass, political and selfish.” Legislators could have avoided the perception of self- interest if they’d also moved the legislative primaries from June to February, critics said. That would have prohibited current lawmakers from running again. Instead, the legislative primaries will remain in June – adding to the cost. In the three previous presidential elections – 1996, 2000 and 2004 – the legislative and presidential primaries were all held simultaneously in March. “This is so blatantly geared toward retaining power and influence that the public is bound to be cynical,” said Carmen Balber, a consumer advocate for the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights. “They could just as easily do a term limits extension that didn’t grandfather all the leaders. Instead, they’re doing it for their own political interest.” Nu ez denied any self-interest. “This is an issue that stands on its own. It doesn’t need to be accompanied by anything else,” Nu ez said at a news conference before the vote. to Feb. 5 Sonoma [email protected] (916) 441-2101160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! The Feb. 5 primary could turn into a de facto national primary, with as many as 19 states having moved or are considering moving to that date, including New York, Florida, New Jersey and Illinois. They would follow New Hampshire, Iowa, South Carolina and Nevada in the nation’s first primaries and caucuses, creating what will likely be an unprecedented flow of campaign cash – with unpredictable effects on how campaigns are waged. “We need to do this because as long as I can remember California is basically an ATM for presidential candidates,” Assembly Charles M. Calderon, D-Whittier, said during the Assembly debate. “California is an important state in this union, and we need to be involved in who the next president of the United States is.” The assemblyman’s brother, Sen. Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, wrote the early primary bill. The Senate passed the bill last month on a 31-5 vote. The potential for an early California vote already has paid dividends for the state. Major candidates from both parties – including Democrats Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards, and Republicans John McCain and Rudy Giuliani – have made numerous appearances in the state, and not merely to raise cash.