A pay cut disguised as a rise offered to staff earning just above the minimum wage at Nottingham’s Riverside Bakery has resulted in a strike ballot, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Monday 21 February).

More than 150 workers at Riverside Bakery are being balloted for strike action over a pay offer that would leave staff worse off by reducing overtime and premium rates. Riverside Bakery produces quiches, flans and savoury tarts for major retailers including Tesco, ASDA, Sainsbury’s, Aldi and Marks and Spencer.  

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “This offer is a pay cut disguised as a rise. It would leave our members, who are already struggling with low pay and soaring inflation, worse off. I doubt customers will be impressed to learn that the quiches they buy in Sainsbury’s, Marks and Spencer and other supermarkets are being made by workers on the breadline. 

“Riverside Bakery should be aware that if our members vote for strike action, Unite will have their backs with all the support they need.”

The ballot for strike action opens tomorrow (Tuesday 22 February) and closes on 8 March. 

Unite said that the latest pay offer is a serious attack on its members’ premium rates.

Riverside Bakery is part of the Addo Food Group, which was bought by private equity firm PAI Partners in 2020. PAI is planning to merge Addo with another chilled food company it owns, Winterbotham Darby, to create a new company, The Compleat Food Group.  

Unite regional officer Cheryl Pidgeon said: “Riverside Bakery and their new owners, PAI Partners, can well afford to ensure that their already low paid workers’ financial woes are not further increased. 

“With the rising cost-of-living many will be plunged – if they are not there already – into in-work poverty under the current pay offer. Riverside Bakery need to put forward a deal our members can accept before this dispute escalates further.”  

ENDS 

Notes to editors:

For more information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 020 3371 2060 or 07768 693940. Unite press office is on:  020 3371 2065.

Please note the numbers above are for journalists’ enquiries only.

Email: [email protected]

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Unite is the leading union in the UK and Ireland, dedicated to defending and improving members' jobs, pay and conditions. The general secretary is Sharon Graham.