Hovis strike is happening – company says demand for 10% pay rise is unsustainable
Strike action is set to go ahead at the Hovis factory in Belfast as Unite and management fail to reach a pay agreement. The union is asking for a 10% pay rise to bring Belfast bakers in line with their GB counterparts – but management is insisting that’s just not possible.
Bread shortages can be expected within days across Northern Ireland when the strike action takes effect. Strike action was planned from the morning of Friday 14th May, with the union warning of the “likelihood of bread shortages” over the weekend. Management offered a three percent pay increase, but the bakers have rejected it – they want pay parity with Hovis workers in Britain.
Unite says post-Brexit red tape will make it more difficult for bead to be brought in from Britain as supply falters at the Apollo Road site. Hovis have previously described the call for a ten percent pay rise “clearly unsustainable”.
The company’s management says that the 10.5% pay rise – plus additional elements asked for by the union effectively would be a 15% increase overall – which is simply not sustainable for the company.
The deadlock continues while a solution is sought.