The Hormel Foods factory that makes Corn Nuts is on strike, with workers walking out over a change to their medical benefits.
About 40 members of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union walked off the job at the Corn Nuts plant in Fresno, Calif., on Aug. 16. The plant processes Hormel’s entire output of the salty snack.
Strikers and the union say Hormel unilaterally changed their medical benefits after it bought the Corn Nuts brand from Kraft Heinz, as part of the 2021 deal that brought over Planters and other snack nut brands. According to a statement from the union, Hormel imposed a new medical plan soon after the purchase without consulting the union, then changed the terms again this year. The new plan has higher premiums for the workers and higher deductibles.
“To do this to them in the middle of a pandemic of all things” is especially hard, a union official told the Fresno Bee.
A Hormel spokesperson told the Bee that the company is “working closely with union representatives on a new collective bargaining agreement that is consistent with our total rewards program, which includes competitive wages and benefits.”