Mr Andreasen’s Long Service… Bury Free Press, 1965
A DANISH boy who came to England in his early twenties, not speaking a word of English, had ambitions in the bacon industry.
His first job was in the accounts department of a margarine factory in Cheshire. Then he got his chance as a book-keeper in St. Edmundsbury Co-operative Bacon Factory, Elmswell.
That was a half century ago, and this week Mr. Julius C. Andreasen retired after 48 years’ service at the factory, the last 24 years as general manager and secretary. In his new home in St. Edmund’s Drive, Elmswell, only a stone’s throw from the factory and within sight of the manager’s house which he vacated three months ago, he said: “I’m going to miss my job very much but I shall go to the factory regularly just for a chat and to see how things are going along.”
Bad state of industry
For Mr. Andreasen retirement comes at an unfortunate time. He leaves the industry “in the worst position I can ever remember”. He blames the Government for reducing the guaranteed price which, he claims, has led to an acute shortage in the pig population of the country. “With prices as they are it is just not worth while for West Suffolk farmers to breed pigs. There isn’t sufficient profit in the industry to make it attractive enough”, he said. At Elmswell factory the intake has been reduced to about two thirds of what it was two years ago and Elmswell is representative of what is happening elsewhere in the country. “It’s a hard thing to say, but at the moment I just couldn’t advise any young man to go into this industry”, said Mr. Andreasen. “Still, it has taken a lot of ups and downs over the years and prospects may brighten.”
Growth of factory
When Mr. Andreasen came to Elmswell the factory employed about 18 people and was capable of dealing with about 700 pigs per week. Today the employment figure is more than 200 and 3,000 pigs have been dealt with in a week. A £60,000 modernisation scheme carried out over the past two years has made the factory one of the most up-to-date in the country. Said Mr. Andreasen: “The factory is very important for West Suffolk. It caters for local labour as well as providing an alternative market, with better prices, for pig producers. We take pigs from all over the Eastern Counties.” Although he was born in Denmark, Mr. Andreasen regards West Suffolk as his home. “I have been to Denmark for holidays, the most recent in 1951”, he says, “but I have never considered going back to live there.”
Enjoyed life and work
“The people here were always very nice to me; they never treated me as a foreigner and I have always felt at home here. I have enjoyed my life and work here and I would never want to live anywhere else”, he said. Before he left the factory, Mr. Andreasen was presented with a television set by the staff. Mr. Andreasen’s successors are Mr. G. W. Cousins, secretary, and Mr. J. Henderson, general manager.