Shropshire Star

Workers at soft drinks plant to strike over pay

Unite members at the Coca Cola Europacific Partners site in Wakefield voted to walk out for a series of strikes from June 8.

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The logo of Unite the Union on a building

Workers at a soft drinks plant are to strike in a dispute over pay.

Unite said hundreds of its members at the Coca Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) site in Wakefield would walk out for a series of strikes from June 8.

The workers voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action over a pay offer which the union said was worth an average of 6%, adding it did nothing to address the cost-of-living crisis.

There would be 14 days of strike action, comprising three 48-hour strikes and two 96-hour strikes, spaced over a two-week period.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Coca Cola Europacific Partners is making profits in the billions but it’s delivering a pay cut to the very workers who are making them.”

A Coca Cola Europacific Partners spokesperson said: “In the current economic climate, we believe the pay rises that we are offering are very competitive within the market place.

“We also provide substantial additional benefits and bonuses to our colleagues, altogether this is an average total package of £46,900 for a colleague at Wakefield.

“We have also made a £1,000 payment to all frontline colleagues in the past 12 months to support the current cost-of-living challenges.

“Our competitive rewards package includes our share-save scheme and almost 80% of our Wakefield colleagues invest in that scheme and benefit from our ongoing success as a business.”

The spokesperson continued: “We have a strong track record of supporting colleagues at our Wakefield site, allowing them to build their skills and develop their careers in a hi-tech, modern manufacturing operation, where we have invested more than £100 million in the past five years alone.

“While Unite has chosen to proceed with industrial action, we remain fully committed to maintaining talks with our colleagues at our Wakefield site and their representatives to secure a constructive outcome.

“We have robust contingency measures in place and are confident that there will be no disruption to our trade customers.”

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