Strike planned at Yorkshire chocolate crumb plant

Four days of strike action are planned at chocolate crumb manufacturer Meadow Foods following a dispute over a 2% pay rise, according to union Unite.

The workers at Meadow Foods at Holme-on-Spalding-Moor, Yorkshire, UK, are due to walk-out at 18.00 on Saturday 12 January until 18.00 on Tuesday 15 January, and the strike is planned to hit night and day shifts over the four days.

Unite regional officer Dave Monaghan said: “Our members have overwhelmingly rejected a shoddy two per cent pay offer and are seeking an increase in line with the retail price index, currently running at 3.2%, to keep up with the soaring cost of living.

“This modest demand is in sharp and glaring contrast with the excessive 82% increase that the company directors pocketed as highlighted in the latest accounts.

“There is still a generous window of opportunity for the management to sit down and enter into meaningful negotiations before the strike is due to commence.”

Meadow Foods said in a statement that it was involved in pay negotiations with a small number of unionised employees at the site.

“We are a fair and generous employer with no history of industrial action and hope to get this matter resolved as soon as possible.

“The fair and sustainable pay increase proposed by Meadow Foods is supported by the majority of our 300 workforce and so we are disappointed that a small group of employees at our Holme-on-Spalding-Moor site has decided to take this action.

“Meadow Foods’ management remains committed to positively resolving this issue as soon as possible. Our door remains open for continued constructive negotiations.”

The site at Holme-on-Spalding-Moor has been a dairy for more than 75 years.

Today, it makes chocolate crumb, a mixture of sugar, dairy milk and cocoa liquor which is used in chocolate production.

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