Striking Jim Beam Workers Accept New Contract

Image courtesy of Andrew*

If you were worried that a walkout at two Jim Beam distilleries in Kentucky was going to threaten supplies of whiskey, rest easy: striking workers voted today to accept a new contract from parent company Beam Suntory.

The president of Union Food and Commercial Workers 111D told The Courier-Journal [warning: link contains video that autoplays] that the deal is a win for all involved.

“After months of negotiation and feeling like the voice of UFCW 111D was not being heard, we had hoped that we would not have to go on strike to reach an agreement with Beam Suntory management,” president Janelle Mudd told the publication. “In the end, we made a strong statement and we were heard.”

The deal has many of the elements the union wanted included: equal pay for equal work, a limit on temporary employees, and the hiring of more full-time employees.

“We appreciate management’s diligence to reach an agreement with the Union,” she said. “They met with employees from a cross-section of departments from both the Clermont and Boston plants, and representatives talked to employees on the picket line to clarify the areas of greatest need.”

More than 200 union workers walked off the job over the weekend after voting to reject a previous contract offer from the world’s top bourbon producer, prompting concerns that a strike could affect whiskey production.

All is well now, however: employees will be back at work making whiskey on Monday morning.

Jim Beam workers approve new contract [The Courier-Journal]

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