Management and unions at Bord Na Móna are to meet next week to discuss the implications of the company's worst peat harvest returns since the company was set up in 1946.

Bad weather over the past four months led to the loss of over 2.5m tonnes of peat.

However, unions representing the company’s 2,000 permanent workers said there is no basis at this stage for considering redundancies.

The company was already seeking transformational change in work practices before the summer.

A restructuring plan aimed at reducing jobs in workshops has been proposed, while senior management has flagged problems with transport costs and a fuel supply agreement with the ESB that is due to expire.

Bord na Móna has said the company is in a serious financial position because of the poor harvest - but plans had already been under way to reduce staff numbers before the bad weather.

It is understood the company wants to close one workshop at Boora, Co Offaly and reduce staff numbers at others in Longford, Westmeath, Laois, Offaly, Kildare, Roscommon and Mayo.