Strikes by 150 mill workers employed by UK animal feed and nutritional product manufacturer, AB Agri, have been cancelled after they voted to accept a two year pay deal.
The union, Unite, said the deal also contains an agreement to allow union recognition across AB Agri's mills.
Reacting, Unite general secretary, Sharon Graham, said that AB Agri workers have won a much-improved pay offer and strengthened their collective bargaining position across the company.
The workers will receive a pay rise of 4.5% back paid from October 2022, plus a 1.5% lump sum. From September 2023, their pay will increase again by an additional 5.5%, with a further 2% in January 2024.
An additional day’s annual leave is also included in the deal.
The workers are based at mills in Bury St Edmonds in Suffolk, Walsingham in Norfolk, Flixborough in Lincolnshire, Sherburn in North Yorkshire, Cupar in Fife, Enstone in Oxfordshire, Cullompton in Devon, and Fridaythrope in East Yorkshire. They had threathened industrial action in April over pay levels and collective bargaining recognition.
In an emailed statement to us, a spokesperson for ABN, an AB Agri division, said: “At ABN we are committed to being an employer of choice that aims to attract and retain our employees by offering competitive packages. We had a productive conversation with Unite on Tuesday and agreed a way forward for all parties. We look forward to continuing to work with them.”
If the industrial action had gone ahead it would have caused significant disruption to the operations of AB Agri mills, which produce a huge proportion of the UK’s pig and poultry feed.