A pay dispute that has rocked Heinz’s flagship UK production site for three months has ended after staff accepted the latest offer from the baked beans maker.
Workers at Heinz’s Kitt Green facility in Wigan voted in favour of a deal that will see the US food giant award a 3.9% pay increase for 2010 back-dated from last spring and an identical hike for 2011. Heinz also offered a pay supplement that will be added into wages from October this year.
The offer was the latest in a number tabled by Heinz since October. Staff rejected each offer from the company and embarked on a series of sporadic strikes that started in early December and continued through Christmas and into the New Year.
However, the Unite union said today that over 75% of the more than 1,050 staff that voted on the latest pay offer had accepted.
“We are pleased to have reached a negotiated settlement with Heinz. It is important that Heinz has listened to its workforce and offered a fairer pay deal, one that acknowledges the contribution the workforce has made to the company’s success,” Unite national office Jennie Formby said today (18 January).
Heinz, which said the revised pay deal meant “normal working” had resumed at the site, added: “The trade union team and factory management are agreed on working closely together to enhance ways of working at the site.”