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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

A.G. Barr Workers Strike to Hit Irn-Bru Supplies 

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Soft drinks company offering real terms pay cut despite £52.9m chilling in the bank.

Unite the union confirmed today (10 August) strike action will go ahead tomorrow at A.G. Barr’s production and distribution centre in Cumbernauld.

Unite represents trucker and shunter drivers who are essential to the supply of the company’s world-renowned products including Irn-Bru – one of the nation’s most popular soft drinks.

There will be pickets outside the main entrance to the Cumbernauld centre at 5.30 am until 8am, and thereafter at 1pm until 3pm.

The 24-hour stoppage is the first of nine with the final stoppage ending on 6 October.

A continuous ban on overtime also came into effect this week.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham, said:

“A.G. Barr can afford to pay its trucker and shunter drivers far more than the penny-pinching pay cut currently on offer.

“The drivers are absolutely essential to supplies, including Irn-Bru.

“The company is cash rich with £52.9m chilling in the bank.

“We will back our members all the way in their fight for better jobs, pay and conditions.”

Despite talks through the auspices of the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas), Unite can confirm that A.G. Barr has to date, still refused to move beyond the five per cent pay offer for 2023.

This offer equates to a significant real-terms pay cut with the broader cost of living measurement (RPI) currently standing at 10.7 per cent.

The A.G. Barr workers previously backed strike action by 83 per cent.

The popular multi-beverage business increased its revenue by 18.2 per cent to £317.6m for the year ended on 29 January 2023.

The company which produces popular brands such as Irn-Bru increased its adjusted profit before tax to £43.5m, and due to strong revenue generation, it reported a net cash position of £52.9m.

Andy Brown, Unite industrial officer said:

“Unite’s members have no option but to take strike action because A.G. Barr stubbornly refuses to give its loyal workforce a fair share of its sparkling profits.

“There is a steely determination among our members because five per cent just doesn’t cut it.”

“The 24-hour strike action will be the first of nine stoppages over the coming weeks.

“A.G. Barr’s stinginess has escalated this dispute when it could have been easily resolved with a fair pay offer.”

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