Internal restructuring
Vlaams Gewest; Prov. Limburg (B); Arr. Hasselt
Location of affected unit(s)
Manufacture Of Food And Beverage
Manufacture Of Food Products
10.51 - Operation of dairies and cheese making

211 jobs
Number of planned job losses
Job loss
Announcement Date
10 December 2020
Employment effect (start)
10 December 2020
Foreseen end date


Yoko Cheese, the Belgian branch of the Dutch dairy production company FrieslandCampina, has announced the closure of its packaging establishment for cheese in Genk, as a result, 211 jobs will be cut. 

Because of the COVID-19 crisis, by the end of 2020, FrieslandCampina will move the packaging of cheese in its Dutch establishments (namely Wolvega and Leerdam), by reducing the packaging sites from three to two. The formal information and consultation process has now been launched. 

Company representatives claim that the decision to close the Genk based site is due to underutilisation of its cheese packaging network. Moreover, they added that this closure will lead to a €100 million saving costs from 2022. Whereas trade unions report that they are surprised by the decision, as the facility has always been viable. 

FrieslandCampina is owned by 11,500 affiliated dairy farms. The Belgian establishment closure follows a greater European internal restructuring, overall, around 1,000 employees are at risk. In particular, 195 in Germany and around 230 in the Netherlands. However, the precise distribution of the 1,000 layoffs among Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands is not available, but according to the sources, the majority of the jobs cuts will occur in the Netherlands. 



Eurofound (2020), Yoko Cheese, Internal restructuring in Belgium, factsheet number 102754, European Restructuring Monitor. Dublin, https://restructuringeventsprod.azurewebsites.net/restructuring-events/detail/102754.