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Union's warning after Greene King workers vote for strike action over ‘paltry’ pay offer

Beer drinkers' favourite ales could be in short supply after Greene King workers voted for strike action following a ‘paltry’ pay offer by the brewery, Unite union, has said.

Unite members, including draymen, brewery production staff and warehouse workers, voted strongly in favour of strike action after years of annual two per cent pay rises that fail to reflect the rising cost of living.

The union has more than 160 members in Greene King’s brewing and brands department, with the membership split between Bury St Edmunds and distribution centres in Abingdon and Eastwood.

Green King Brewery. (26718179)
Green King Brewery. (26718179)

The ballot comes after the £4.6 billion takeover of Greene King, which has 3,000 pubs, by CK Asset Holdings in August.

Mark Jaina, Unite regional officer, said: “Despite statements from Greene King’s managing director Matt Starbuck that the brewery was ready to find a way to resolve this dispute, Unite has heard nothing since this ballot was announced.

“We hope that now Greene King’s bosses know our members are serious about receiving a reasonable pay rise, they will be ready to make a sensible offer before business is disrupted.

“The leadership of CK Asset Holdings can’t be happy with the fact there is the possibility of loyal Greene King beer drinkers making do with short measures because of strikes.

“Our members do not want to take industrial action, but they have been left with no choice because of the actions of Greene King’s management.

“The fact is that another two per cent pay rise will not cut it when the cost of living is soaring. This dispute will not be settled until workers receive a reasonable increase to their wages.”

Yesterday, Greene King said it was confident industrial action would have little impact on deliveries to pubs.

More: Bury St Edmunds brewer Greene King's response to Unite strike ballot vote

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