Workers to strike over pensions row

FURIOUS workers at a Suffolk meat plant are to strike over changes to a company pension scheme which union officials have described as "unjust, unfair and unwarranted".

FURIOUS workers at a Suffolk meat plant are to strike over changes to a company pension scheme which union officials have described as "unjust, unfair and unwarranted".

Staff at Grampian Foods, which operates from Little Wratting, near Haverhill, will walk out at 5am on Friday for a 24-hour period after voting in favour of action by a margin of three to two.

Last night, officials from the Transport and General Workers Union (T&G) warned company bosses the strike in Suffolk could be the first of several across the country, saying it was possible action could spread to plants in Scotland and Wales and affect the supply of meat to supermarkets.

"This is a company that is tampering with pensions which is unjust, unfair and unwarranted," said Chris Kaufman, T&G national secretary.


You may also want to watch:


"Our members are very clear that they mean to defend their pensions and stand up for their right to what is, after all, their money.

"In spite of the pressure they have tried to exert on our people, Grampian cannot claim to be surprised by this result."

Most Read

The pensions dispute began earlier this year after the company announced its plans to end a final salary pension scheme in favour of a money purchase scheme, which the union has said is of higher risk.

The T&G says Grampian failed to give adequate information about why the scheme should end, and said the change had been designed as a cost cutting measure.

Earlier deadlines set by the company for the introduction of the scheme were delayed as a result of ongoing negotiations, but the controversial changes were finally brought into force last month.

Around a thousand workers in Haverhill, Cambuslang and Coupar Angus in Scotland, Sandycroft in North Wales and Llangefni on Anglesey were balloted over the action as a result.

It is thought around 500 will take part in Friday's strike in Haverhill, where Grampian is one of the largest employers.

No one from the company was available for comment last night.

However, a spokesman has previously told the EADT: "Grampian remains committed to providing a pension scheme for all its employees to ensure financial security at retirement."

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter