Strike action threatened at AB Agri mills

By Gwen Ridler

- Last updated on GMT

Unite is balloting its members for strike action at AB Agri mills across the UK
Unite is balloting its members for strike action at AB Agri mills across the UK

Related tags Strike Industrial action

Unite members at AB Agri’s mills across the UK are being balloted for strike action over pay, after rejecting a ‘significant real terms pay cut’.

Up to 150 workers at mills based in Suffolk, Norfolk, Oxfordshire, Fife, Devon, Lincolnshire and East and North Yorkshire rejected an imposed pay offer of 4.5%, lower than the real rate of inflation – 13.4%. 

Workers are being balloted until 8 March. Unite warned the animal feed manufacturer that strike action would cause significant disruption to its operations.  

Cost of living crisis 

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “AB Agri and ABF are extremely wealthy but expect our members to shoulder a real terms pay cut during the worst of cost of living crisis for a generation. They can absolutely afford to put forward a better offer and we are determined to ensure that they do so.   

 “Unite always defends our members’ jobs, pay and conditions and AB AGRI’s workforce have their union’s full support.” 

The union also claimed that AB Agri’s efforts to undermine collective bargaining and its refusal to allow staff, mainly at its Flixborough site in Lincolnshire, to pursue voluntary redundancy were at odds with its membership of the Ethical Trading Initiative.  

‘Bad behaviour’ 

Unite regional officer Mark Jaina added: “Disgracefully, AB AGRI is trying to union bust and divide its workers. This is behaviour from the dark days. Unite will not stand for it and nor will we accept the vindictive treatment of any worker at this employer. 

 “Unite is determined to defend these workers, secure recognition for our union and deliver an offer our members can accept.” 

Meanwhile, Unite is to ballot more than 200 members at the sausage skin maker Devro’s Scotland plant for strike action in a dispute over pay.​ 

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Devro’s pay offer is substantially below the current cost of living, which means it is a pay cut and completely unacceptable to our members.” 

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