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Tuesday, June 2, 2020

NI oven strike to hit pancake production

Workers staked at the gates of one of Northern Ireland’s largest bakeries during a strike action aimed at stopping Pancake on Tuesday.

A Kingsmill bread truck stopped at the entrance to the Allied Bakeries site in east Belfast and the police were involved in mediation with the unionists.

Pancake Tuesday is Tuesday 25 February, but this is the key production week.

The factory produces products such as Kingsmill bread.

Joining Union Regional Coordination Officer Susan Fitzgerald said: “There will be no Pancake Tuesday celebrated in Northern Ireland and we hope to influence it elsewhere as well.

“During this picket, we will send people to stay out of the supermarket flyers, saying that other workers, in solidarity with the Allied Bakery workers, should boycott Sunblest, Kingsmill and the other products that come out of here.

“This unfortunately includes a favorite, pancakes, which will be in demand next week.

“We intend to stop this as much as possible because we have no chance.

“When workers are forced to do the same to get fair pay increases, when this company distributes millions of bonuses to directors, we feel that we are (getting) the support of ordinary people across Northern Ireland and beyond.”

The BBC reported that the talks between the parties ended on Friday.

The company claimed to be proud of its reputation “as a stable and long-lasting employer in the community” and was disappointed with the industrial action.

He added: “All those involved in this ballot are paid at rates higher than the hourly rate recommended by the Living Wage Foundation and provided with a range of benefits on the job, including life insurance and social security.”

Allied Bakeries is part of Associated British Foods, a multinational corporation that owns a number of brands, including clothing retailer Primark, and recorded profits of around £ 1.4 billion last year.

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