German confectionery sector offers above inflation pay offer to resolve industry pay dispute

A collective of confectionery companies operating in Germany have made a collective offer in an ongoing pay dispute with workers in the HamburgSchleswig-Holstein tariff area, amounting to an overall wage increase of 3.1% reports Neill Barston.

The offer, which is to August 31, 2025, followed by 2.6% for the period covering 1 September 2025 to 31 October 2026, has been made in response to concerns from employees that wages had not kept pace with major overall living costs, as the industry continues to be negatively impacted by global economic and geopolitical conditions.

Among the major challenges for companies include increases in raw material, energy and logistics costs, in addition to the already high location-related burdens such as taxes, labor costs and bureaucracy in Germany.

As the industry collective noted, its offer for a term of 28 months, exceeds the inflation rate, which is currently 2.2% and has therefore fallen to its lowest level in three years. It also stated that training salaries should be adjusted by a fixed amount of €50 for each increase period.

According to the BDSI German confectionery sector organisation, the hearing has now been mutually postponed until  August 28, 2024, pending consideration of the offer.

Furthermore, the country’s key industry body acknowledged that companies in the German confectionery industry stand behind their employees who do excellent work and are aware of their responsibility. The BDSI therefore emphasises the importance of a fair and responsible conclusion of negotiations that both recognizes the performance of the employees and takes the economic situation of the company into account.

The BDSI represents the economic interests of over 200 mostly medium-sized German confectionery companies. It is both a business and employers’ association. The German confectionery industry is the fourth largest sector of the German food industry, accounting for around 10% of sales. Their special characteristic is their strong export orientation. German confectionery manufacturers employ around 60,000 people.

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