200 North Wales jobs to go due to ban on wet wipes containing plastic in the UK

-Credit: (Image: publicity picture)
-Credit: (Image: publicity picture)

Around 200 North Wales jobs look set to be axed under plans to close a wet wipes factory due to a UK plastics ban. The UK Government and governments in Wales and Scotland are banning baby wipes that contain plastic from the middle of 2026.

Wet wipes frequently litter Britain's beaches and eventually break down into microplastics, which contribute to water pollution and damage ecosystems. This prompted the action by the various governments in the UK.

But Kimberly-Clark says it can't meet the deadline to adapt the plant in Flint. They are now consulting on closing the site - dealing a major jobs hit to the area.

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A Kimberly-Clark spokesperson said: “Following the official announcement by the UK Government to ban the sale of wet wipes containing plastic, we are consulting on the proposed closure of our manufacturing operations at Flint, North Wales, in 2025.

“Phasing out plastics from our baby wipes has long been part of K-C’s sustainability plans and we have already removed a significant amount of plastic from them. Most of our baby wipes use a proprietary technology with 70% natural fibres and 30% plastic added to provide the necessary strength to clean and care for babies' skin properly.

“However, we’re unable to meet the UK Government’s deadline of mid-2026 as it significantly limits our ability to adapt our consumer manufacturing processes in Flint in time, which means it may no longer be viable to keep our consumer and B2B sites operational.

“Decisions that involve our employees are the hardest to make and we know it is a challenging period for our team. Supporting them through this complex situation is our top priority. Should the site closure proposal go ahead, we will keep the Flint site operational into 2025, and will continue to work closely with our customers and retailers on transition plans for affected products.”

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