Apparel maker Castleblair has announced plans to shut down two of its Scottish factories at the cost of about 500 jobs, The Scotsman has reported.

The Dunfermline-based company, which counts high street giant Marks & Spencer (M&S) as its chief customer, said it had started negotiations with the GMB union over terms.

However, it confirmed that its financial situation was desperate and that jobs at the Glenrothes and Dunfermline plants were likely to be moved offshore to Turkey.

Finance director Gordon Forbes described the move as "very difficult" but promised to explore every option before finalising the closures.

"The plants have been operating at a loss for some time now, whereas our factory in Turkey is profitable," he said.

"We have tried for some time now, but are finding it increasingly difficult to manufacture clothes in Scotland."

According to Forbes, the move is partly a result of pressure from M&S, who he said had demanded a quicker and cheaper supply of clothes from the firm.

"People want their clothes more stylised and at a cheaper price," he explained.

"The intensity of high street competition is such that the retailers have to deliver."

M&S confirmed the demand, with a spokeswoman saying, "We have to give our customers what they want when they want it."

Castleblair closed its Alva plant in November at a loss of 80 jobs.