Weetabix factory workers to stage strike over pay

·Freelance Writer
·2-min read
Weetabix. (Photo by: Newscast/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
A strike by factory workers could lead to a shortage of Weetabix. (Newscast/Universal Images Group/Getty)

Weetabix factory workers have voted to take industrial action over a pay dispute.

Members of Usdaw at the plant in Kettering, Northants, which produces cereal bars, will walk out from 7pm on 2 August for 24 hours.

They previously voted unanimously to strike in a dispute over shift pay.

Ed Leach, Usdaw area organiser, said: “Industrial action is very much a last resort, but the unanimous vote to strike shows the strength of feeling among our members on this issue.

Members of Usdaw at the plant in Kettering will walk out from 7pm on 2 August for 24 hours. (Creative Commons/Matt Buck/Wikipedia)
Members of Usdaw at the plant in Kettering will walk out from 7pm on 2 August for 24 hours. (Creative Commons/Matt Buck/Wikipedia)

“It is disappointing that the company has pushed this dispute to the point of industrial action, which will not be resolved until an agreement is reached on the value of the shift premium pay for unsocial hours.

“We urge the company to move their position to avoid this industrial action and disruption to the business.”

A Weetabix spokesperson said: “We are naturally disappointed by the decision to strike, but respect the voice of our workforce and their representatives. Our success over nearly 90 years is built on a strong relationship with our workforce.

“We will remain in close consultation with them and are confident that together we can avoid any product shortages while we implement necessary new ways of working to keep our cereal bars line competitive for the next 90 years and beyond.”

Last month, a series of strikes planned by engineers employed by Weetabix were cancelled following talks with the company.

Members of the Unite union based at factories in Corby and Kettering in Northamptonshire were due to take action amid claims they faced pay cuts of up to £5,000 a year.

Before those strikes were called off, Unite regional officer Sean Kettle said industrial action would "undoubtedly disrupt the production of Weetabix and result in shortages in the shops".

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