Hormel Foods Union Workers Ratify Contract

Oct. 13, 2023
Four-year deal boosts hourly wages, bereavement leave, and pension and 401k benefits, and protects health care coverage for the workers.

The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) released a statement confirming that its members ratified a new contract with Hormel Foods earlier this week, officially ending months of negotiations and avoiding a strike.

In the statement UFCW International president Marc Perrone, says, in part:

“Our members who work at Hormel Foods locations in Minnesota, Georgia, Wisconsin and Iowa voted today to ratify a contract that includes the largest wage increase in the company’s history. In addition to gaining hourly wage increases of $3-$6 an hour, the new contract nearly doubles bereavement leave, protects health care coverage, and increases both pension and 401k benefits.”

The contract was called “historic” by the union, and Hormel Foods also expressed its satisfaction at reaching the agreement in its own statement shared with local news outlets:

“We are pleased that we have reached a new, four-year agreement with the unions representing our team members in Atlanta, Ga., Austin, Minn., Algona, Iowa, and Beloit, Wis.”

The pressure was mounting to get a deal done after the previous contract expired on Sept. 10, and the union rejected Hormel’s initial offer, saying it wasn’t “good enough” in light of the company’s record profits. However, the two sides agreed to extend the previous contract to Oct. 8 to avoid a strike and continue negotiations.

The two sides reached a tentative agreement earlier this week and the membership had been slated to vote on Oct. 9.

About the Author

Andy Hanacek | Senior Editor

Andy Hanacek has covered meat, poultry, bakery and snack foods as a B2B editor for nearly 20 years, and has toured hundreds of processing plants and food companies, sharing stories of innovation and technological advancement throughout the food supply chain. In 2018, he won a Folio:Eddie Award for his unique "From the Editor's Desk" video blogs, and he has brought home additional awards from Folio and ASBPE over the years. In addition, Hanacek led the Meat Industry Hall of Fame for several years and was vice president of communications for We R Food Safety, a food safety software and consulting company.

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