Morrisons has launched a year-long consultation as it looks to close its Rathbones bakery site in Wigan.

The closure would form part of its plans to expand bakery production at its Rathbones Wakefield site, as the retailer looks to grow its fresh food offering.

Morrisons said it was looking to expand its Wakefield site by 41,250 square feet, as well as bringing in new equipment to expand capacity. Production from the Wigan site would move to Wakefield.

A spokesperson for the retailer said it has proposed to close the Wigan site next year, but that it was too early to say how many job losses there would be at this stage.

“There is no room for expansion at the Wigan site and it therefore makes sense to concentrate growth on the Wakefield factory,” said Morrisons.

He added that the retailer would be looking to find opportunities for workers from the Wigan site to the expanded Wakefield factory or to other sites in the north west.

Martyn Fletcher, group manufacturing director, Morrisons, said: “We have seen significant growth as a company in recent years and have big plans for the future.

“We need to be sure that we have the manufacturing facilities to equip us for this and after a detailed review of our operations we believe it is right to invest and grow our Wakefield facility.

He continued: “Given our strong manufacturing presence in the north west of England, we are confident that many of our colleagues in Wigan will find alternative roles with us in the area.”