Food and Beverage Business

Cargill meat plant employees in Canada initiate strike action

Cargill meat plant employees in Canada initiate strike action Cargill Food and Beverage Business

At a Cargill meat processing facility in Guelph, Ontario, Canada, close to 1,000 workers went on strike, citing a disagreement over pay. The local United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) representing the employees reported that the strike occurred after 82% of workers rejected a negotiated settlement between Cargill and the UFCW.

The strike followed a mandate issued by 99% of the facility’s employees to the UFCW negotiating committee in April. The UFCW raised concerns during negotiations with Cargill, including rising living costs and the reduction of a $2 an hour pandemic pay, which workers claim was cut from their salaries during the peak of the Covid crisis.

Cargill’s Dunlop meat processing site, which employs around 950 people and processes approximately 1,500 head of cattle per day, produces private-label case-ready meat products for retail customers in Canada. These products include poultry, pork, beef sausages, and ground beef.

Kelly Tosato, president of UFCW’s Local 175 branch representing the workers at the Dunlop site, stated, “The decision to go on strike is never easy, but these members aren’t satisfied with what the company has brought to the table. And we will have their backs until their union negotiating committee can achieve a deal that reflects the nature of their hard work and commitment to creating quality food products that feed hundreds of thousands.”

The UFCW criticized Cargill for not providing an offer strong enough to support its employees, despite the company’s slogan of “working to nourish the world.” Requests for comment from Cargill were unanswered at the time of writing.

The Union has been asked for more information on the specifics of the negotiated settlement.

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