Small firms campaigner Russell Luckock, of Birmingham-based AE Harris, bemoans another casualty of the collapse of manufacturing...
The news that American conglomerate Heinz is closing HP, the world famous facility in Aston, is yet another nail in the coffin of Birmingham manufacturing.
Anyone passing through the area would be made aware of the presence of the factory by the all too distinctive aroma pervading the atmosphere.
HP sauce is a part of the British culinary scene, and to think that this traditional bit of Brum is going to be produced elsewhere, is almost unthinkable.
Yet it is another sign that manufacturing industry in the West Midlands appears to be moving slowly into the history books.
We have seen the gradual collapse of car production, with famous names, now referred to in the past tense.
This has been accompanied by literally hundreds of component producers either going into liquidation, or closing down.
There is just no other work available, and family units have been forced to change their way of life, some leaving the area altogether, plans for the future being abandoned.
HP employees now have the same problems, for the mortgage still has to be paid, and families must be fed.
The Government's response, has been to advise companies to "seek added value work".
Precisely what happens to all those workers made redundant overnight. This advice is useless to them.
Unfortunately, as a nation, we have to face the fact that in many areas of business life, we are pricing ourselves out of the world wide market place.
Business closures are affecting both blue and white collar workers. Call centres are burgeoning in India, and the so called professions are transferring routine clerical operations to cheaper parts of the world.
Political leaders, rather than squabbling on internal matters of succession, should bring their minds to bear on the disappearing manufacturing infrastructure of the British economy, and take some positive action to arrest the slide.
Costs have to be dramatically reduced, or Government protection given, by way of grant aid similar to that accorded to the farming community.
All nations have to have a thriving manufacturing infrastructure, ours is fading away.
Producers, in the present circumstances, need help, not rhetoric.
So far this year, more than 50 component manufacturing companies have gone into liquidation in Birmingham and the West Midlands alone, some as a result of Rover and LDV.
Others are teetering on the brink.
The stupid part of the problem is that the overseas competition will only be for some 10-15 years. Already Chinese factory gate prices are rising steeply in percentage terms.
What a disaster if we have lost all the skills to start again.
Business is, by its very nature, a ruthless game, however, today, there are too many casualties for this region's good.