Update on sugar strike affecting western Canada: Rogers Sugar responds to union rejection of global proposal
December 15, 2023
By Bakers Journal
Vancouver – Rogers Sugar Inc. announced that the Public and Private Workers of Canada Local 8 representing workers at the Company’s Vancouver refinery has rejected the latest global proposal by the company.
Rogers Sugar provided the following statement:
“Rogers Sugar has repeatedly communicated to the union that continuous operation at the Vancouver refinery is essential to preserve and create jobs, meet growing market demand, and to ensure the future of the plant. The status quo is simply not an option. Unfortunately, the parties have not been able to come to an agreement on the fact that, to survive in the long term, the plant needs to move to continuous operation.
“We have put forward our best efforts to resolve the current impasse, including offering several improvements during negotiations. We are disappointed that an acceptable solution has not been found. Given the union bargaining committee’s current position, at this time we are pausing negotiations.
“We take our responsibility in supplying our customers very seriously. We are taking measures to find solutions that meet their ongoing requirements in the short term as well as in the longer term. There is an ample supply of white sugar in the market, and we have restarted the production of brown sugar in Vancouver.
“We are operating the Vancouver refinery at a reduced capacity, and we have sufficient raw sugar on site to continue to do so until May 2024 if necessary.
“Rogers Sugar remains fully committed to reaching a mutually agreeable resolution that secures a strong future for the plant and its employees, and returns the facility to full production as soon as possible. However, we are firm in our objective to support the long- term growth in the Canadian market which provides thousands of jobs in food manufacturing across Canada. We are hopeful that, by moving to continuous operation, the Vancouver plant can continue to be part of this long-term solution.”
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