“The news of the closure to the coke ovens and blast furnace at SSI steelworks is devastating. Although Biochemica is not directly affected by this decision, we work with multiple steel producers across the UK and the supply chain and can understand the distress that the thousands of employees face, not to mention the local economy and communities which will encounter uncertainty over the coming months.
“Biochemica was formed in Teesside, where we continue to hold our headquarters so a large proportion of our staff are local to the area. Almost all of us have a connection to the steel production heritage Teesside has been proud to be part of and know someone or another local business that will suffer as a result of the closure. Personally, my own grandparents worked at the plant as well as other family members so this news is extremely upsetting.
“There is no doubt that challenging times lie ahead. Our heartfelt sympathies are with the generations of hardworking men and women and their families and our industry colleagues at this time.
“Biochemica is committed to doing what we can to provide support and we encourage other regional business to do the same. As a company, we operate a Sustainable Procurement Policy, which includes working closely with local suppliers. We invest in skills and young people through apprenticeships and have wider plans to engage within the local community. We would also welcome speculative enquires from SSI employees for future recruitment opportunities in water treatment roles and fully support the SSI Task Force in its bid to help the workforces from both SSI and the whole supply chain.
“The fire isn’t out permanently, it remains as passion in the hearts of those that have worked in the industry for generations and in the minds of a region that has previously faced – and overcome – adversity. We can only hope that the site is secured for the future and can once again be part of a blazing regional economy.”
Dave Ruddy, Managing Director, Biochemica UK Ltd