Scottish meat processing company AP Jess plunged further into the red last year as it continued to deal with the impact of a major fire at one of its manufacturing plants in 2017.
Accounts filed with Companies House reveal the firm, which also has a stake in an oyster business on the Isle of Barra, posted a pre-tax loss of £535,661 for the year ended March 31 2018. This follows a pre-tax loss of £250,541.
Turnover at the firm was down 20% to £10.577 million, from £13.197m.
The firm, which is run by brothers Allan and David Jess, has its main beef processing operation at the Sandyford abattoir in Paisley.
Manufacturing and retail distribution was formerly done at subsidiary firm McKechnie Jess Ltd in Greenock, while a cooked meat business – Charcuterie Continental Ltd – runs out of Twechar, near Glasgow.
In 2015 the company formed Traigh Mhor Oysters, following a tie-up with Isle of Barra Oysters.
In his report accompanying the accounts, David Jess said the costs relating to a major fire at the McKechnie Jess site in 2017 were reflected in the 2018 results.
“Overnight the production capacity was destroyed at Greenock and a migration of production and staff at Charcuterie’s factory at Twechar was required. We lost about 80% of the Greenock business,” added Mr Jess.
He said a planned extension and refurbishment of the Greenock facility was now impossible and the company was now developing its factory in Twechar as the primary food production facility in the group.
Mr Jess said the firm was now leaner and more streamlined, with a focus on the food service sector, rather than supermarkets, and profitability rather than turnover.