IUF | Coca-Cola Workers Network | Monthly : May 2006

SOUTH AFRICA: FAWU strike at Coca-Cola Canners Wadeville

For the fifth year Coca-Cola has unilaterally undertaken restructuring at the wadeville plant (Germiston,Johannesburg) without consulting the union and therefore breaking the agreement they had at the plant.

Food and Allied Workers Union(FAWU) has here 205 members out 245 total workforce. In February 2006 management announced another imminent restructuring and after unsuccessful attempts to into dialogue with the company on March 3rd the union filed a dispute for mediation at the Commission on Conciliation,Mediation and Arbitration(CCMA). The Meeting took place on April 5th but management did not accept workers' demands. FAWU therefore filed a request for strike authorisation on the April 12 and, at the time , informed the company (Labour Relations Act. requires 48 hours notice). The authorisation was obtain and 230 workers went on May 9. The company claims it never received the notice.

It seems that the main dispute resolves about the following:
-subsequent restructuring of the plant with job losses hitting union members (the union has a majority at the plant)
-issues of corruption and nepotism HR practices of the Plant Manager, Mr. Glenn Riffle and the HR Manager. It seems that the plant manager from the Western Cape is now systematically replacing local workers with friends from the western Cape.
-the above is proved by the fact that the employees who received training by the company under the " Skills Development Act" (a public bill ) are in fact bypassed by other non-skilled from employees from outside.
-apparently tranferring workers from a region to another is not allowed under the "Employment Equity Act."
-management has also unilaterally changed negotiated workers (i.e. non-payment of the shift allowance and withdrew of promised to subsidise workers' housing loans)

The union wants to take legal action and the workers at another FAWU organised Coke plant (SABMiller) in Western Cape have already to filed an authorisation for a solidarity strike.

The union demand to the company were:
-stop unilateral restructuring
-stop neoptism & corruption in hiring practices
-no unilateral changing of the negotiated working conditions
-immidiate removal of the

GERMANY: Coca-Cola buys German mineral water brand Apollinaris

Source: AFP


The US soft drinks giant Coca-Cola said it had agreed to buy the venerable German mineral water brand Apollinaris for an undisclosed sum.Coca-Cola Deutschland, the German arm of the US firm, said in a statement that Apollinaris, one of the best-known mineral water brands in Germany, would in future be controlled by the subsidiary Coca-Cola Erfrischungsgetraenke AG. Apollinaris -- established in 1894 and dubbed the "queen of table waters" -- is based in Hamburg and employs a workforce of 470.

The Apollinaris brand was previously owned by the company, Apollinaris und Schweppes GmbH, which is owned by the Orangina group.
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Orangina, in turn, belongs to private equity firms Lion Capital and Blackstone.
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Apollinaris und Schweppes GmbH also owns the rights to the Schweppes and Orangina brands in Germany and Austria. Those rights are being sold to the German brewery, Krombacher, Coca-Cola Deutschland continued.
.
"Apollinaris has an excellent reputation as a premium brand and will be an excellent extension to our business," said the head of Coca-Cola's German operations, Deryck van Rensburg.
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"Coca-Cola Deutschland will now be present in the fast-growing and strategically important mineral water market."
.
Apollinaris sells around 195 million litres of mineral water each year, equivalent to around six percent of the total sales volume of Coca-Cola Deutschland.
.
The transaction, which will also include another water brand Heppinger, has still to be approved by German competition authorities, Coca-Cola said. — AFP
The US soft drink giant Coca-Cola said it had agreed to buy the venerable German mineral water brand Apollinaris for an undisclosed sum.
.
Coca-Cola Deutschland, the German arm of the US firm, said in a statement that Apollinaris, one of the best-known mineral water brands in Germany, would in future be controlled by the subsidiary Coca-Cola Erfrischungsgetraenke AG.
.
Apollinaris -- established in 1894 and dubbed the "queen of table waters" -- is based in Hamburg and employs a workforce of 470.
.
The Apollinaris brand was previously owned by the company, Apollinaris und Schweppes GmbH, which is owned by the Orangina group.
.
Orangina, in turn, belongs to private equity firms Lion Capital and Blackstone.
.
Apollinaris und Schweppes GmbH also owns the rights to the Schweppes and Orangina brands in Germany and Austria. Those rights are being sold to the German brewery, Krombacher, Coca-Cola Deutschland continued.
.
"Apollinaris has an excellent reputation as a premium brand and will be an excellent extension to our business," said the head of Coca-Cola's German operations, Deryck van Rensburg.
.
"Coca-Cola Deutschland will now be present in the fast-growing and strategically important mineral water market."
.
Apollinaris sells around 195 million litres of mineral water each year, equivalent to around six percent of the total sales volume of Coca-Cola Deutschland.
.
The transaction, which will also include another water brand Heppinger, has still to be approved by German competition authorities, Coca-Cola said. — AFP
The US soft drink giant Coca-Cola said it had agreed to buy the venerable German mineral water brand Apollinaris for an undisclosed sum.
.
Coca-Cola Deutschland, the German arm of the US firm, said in a statement that Apollinaris, one of the best-known mineral water brands in Germany, would in future be controlled by the subsidiary Coca-Cola Erfrischungsgetraenke AG.
.
Apollinaris -- established in 1894 and dubbed the "queen of table waters" -- is based in Hamburg and employs a workforce of 470.
.
The Apollinaris brand was previously owned by the company, Apollinaris und Schweppes GmbH, which is owned by the Orangina group.
.
Orangina, in turn, belongs to private equity firms Lion Capital and Blackstone.
.
Apollinaris und Schweppes GmbH also owns the rights to the Schweppes and Orangina brands in Germany and Austria. Those rights are being sold to the German brewery, Krombacher, Coca-Cola Deutschland continued.
.
"Apollinaris has an excellent reputation as a premium brand and will be an excellent extension to our business," said the head of Coca-Cola's German operations, Deryck van Rensburg.
.
"Coca-Cola Deutschland will now be present in the fast-growing and strategically important mineral water market."
.
Apollinaris sells around 195 million litres of mineral water each year, equivalent to around six percent of the total sales volume of Coca-Cola Deutschland.
.
The transaction, which will also include another water brand Heppinger, has still to be approved by German competition authorities, Coca-Cola said. — AFP

GERMANY: Deadlock in Bargaining at Coke

Lengthy negotiations between the NGG union and Coca-Cola Germany have still not succeeded in resolving issues related to wages and job security for the 9000 employees at the 65 Coke sites covered by the agreement. Job security is a major concern at Coca-Cola's German operations because of the likelihood of major restructuring in the near future.

Following a series of successful warning strikes, the union is preparing for more extensive job actions if the essential demands of the Coke workers are not met. These actions could affect the staging in Germany of football world cup matches, for which Coke is a prime sponsor.

RUSSIA: Coca-Cola local looking for CBA language on premiums/bonuses

At the moment, one of the Russian Coca-Cola HBC Eurasia locals (in Krasnoyarsk, Siberia, established only in January 2006) is negotiating on its first CBA, in which they try to include for the first time regulation on wages and bonuses/premiums (so far this has been decided by the company unilaterally and quite individually).
To support their position that and how this should be regulated, they are looking for contract language on bonuses/premiums - what kind of premiums do exist in different countries, what indicators are used to establish the amount of premium paid, and so on.
Any text would be greatly appreciated, please send to Gisela Neunhoeffer (gisela.neunhoeffer@iuf.org, IUF TNC Coordinator for Eastern Europe and Central Asia).