Also, empty shelves next week? Union says Albert Heijn’s strikes will continue

The FNV union announced that Albert Heijn distribution center workers will continue their strike next week. More and more workers will also participate in job cuts, including part-time workers and temporary workers. This means that there will be empty shelves in some Albert Heijn stores in the coming days.

At the moment it seems very far from reaching an agreement; A new collective bargaining agreement is not being negotiated. The supermarket chain’s Anushka Aspeslagh says that “energy is focused on restarting negotiations.”

Union manager Levin Zühlke-van Hulzen from FNV emphasizes that the union will return to the table only if there is a 10 percent increase in the minimum wage and working conditions do not deteriorate. “We don’t want mountains of gold, we don’t want people to lose it.” The union wants to employ more flexible workers, along with higher wages and good working conditions.

The strike at distribution centers began last weekend. Meanwhile, shelves are empty in Albert Heijn supermarkets, especially in the north-east and southwest of the Netherlands. Because relatively many people quit their jobs, especially in Pijnacker and Zwolle. Aspeslagh finds that many stores are “disturbed” when it comes to supplies. The impact varies by industry.

Zühlke-van Hulzen says he is photographing more and more empty shelves. She thinks things will get worse. “Often a supply remains, but the longer it lasts, the more visible it becomes. Especially if the strike continues to spread.”

Albert Heijn has a hard time estimating how big the impact will be if the actions continue. “Work is being done, but less is delivered than we would like.” The rep says the volume of angry responses from customers isn’t too bad. “Customers know what it is. We hope they understand that.”

Source: NOS