By Kristy Dorsey

Union representatives

of workers at API Foils in Livingston have said

they will file claims

against the factory’s US owners for failing to adhere to consultation rules following confirmation

of 107 redundancies at

the plant.

Workers were turned away last Friday and told to return on Monday for a meeting about the factory’s future. At that meeting yesterday morning, joint administrator Colin Dempster of EY said 107 staff were being let go

with immediate effect,

with 28 retained while administrators seek a buyer.

Mary Alexander, deputy Scottish secretary of Unite the Union, said workers at Livingston had no idea prior to Friday their jobs might be at risk. However, a search that day of the website of Steel Partners, the New York-listed parent company of API Foils, revealed a statement that said it had “commenced administration proceedings in the United Kingdom”.

Unite is calling on the Scottish Government and West Lothian Council to support efforts to find a buyer for the business. In the meantime, information is being collected to file a Protective Award claim for Steel Partners’ failure to collectively inform and consult staff about the redundancies.

“This announcement is all the more shocking as our members have told us the plant was busy and they had won an order for labelling prosecco worth £2m just before Christmas,” Ms Alexander said.

The Livingston plant manufactures specialty foils and packaging materials distributed throughout Europe, North America and Australasia.

Steel Partners has four UK sites, all under threat – API Poynton, Cheshire; API Group near Manchester Airport; API Sheffield, Yorkshire; and Livingston.

In total, they employ about 230 people.

Mr Dempster said the UK group had encountered difficulties due to changes in regulations, the loss of major customers and changes in the market. “We will continue to trade certain parts of the business on a reduced capacity, supplying key customers supporting the business while we consider the group’s options,” he said.