BUSINESS AS USUAL: Homestyle Bake in Toowoomba.
BUSINESS AS USUAL: Homestyle Bake in Toowoomba. contributed

Why Homestyle Bake closed Coast factory

THE 180 Homestyle Bake workers in Toowoomba have been reassured their jobs are safe as the company sells a Sunshine Coast factory.

Owners Brett Pascoe, David Nicoll and Lindsay Weber confirmed the 180 workers based in the Garden City were immune from the effects of the Kunda Park factory closure.

The decision to not renew the lease from September 30 and sell the equipment and operations to a Sydney-based company was made in an effort to safeguard the Homestyle Bake brand against the likely impacts of the drought.

Mr Pascoe said the Kunda Park factory was bought about five years ago and, despite the best efforts of staff, it had never reached its intended potential.

It operated as a separate business entity under the Homestyle Bake banner.

It has left 70 workers, of which about 20 are permanent, without a job from the end of next month.

"One of the major factors influencing the decision has been the cost increases on ingredients due to the drought," Mr Pascoe said.

"We had to look into our businesses and concentrate on our priorities so we can continue to do what we do on a daily basis out of Toowoomba."

He said cost increases from the drought on ingredients could impact from the second half of this year into 2019.

Mr Nicoll said management was working with impacted Sunshine Coast workers on possible redeployments to Toowoomba or Sydney.

"There are a couple of people who have made some inquiries so we have just got to follow that process through," Mr Nicoll said.

"They're inquiring what it would mean for them, weighing up if they pack up everything and move and we're walking them through that.

"These staff up there have been fantastic people and we want to help them out where we can."

Mr Nicoll said all staff would be paid their entitlements owed to them.

The Toowoomba company started in February 1989 and had secured a "multitude of vendors" in the region over the past 29 years.



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