Published: 01/02/2010

FLAI-CGIL and UILA-UIL meat workers walked out on January 29 for 8 hours for the first in a series of strikes at Inalca-JBS Castelvetro (Modena) slaughterhouse in Italy.

On January 13 workers voted in favour of strike action and for a halt to overtime to support their demand for a decent company-level collective agreement. One hundred percent of the workers in the ground beef department joined the strike and participation was extremely high in all other production units.

More than 50 Inalca-JBS workers picketed the company gates from 3AM i despite the extremely cold temperatures. Other FLAI-CGIL and UILA-UIL members and union officer from Italian retailers Coop, Cantine Riunite and CIV picketed in solidarity with Inalca-JBS workers.

The high participation and solidarity highlight the workers’ determination to force Inalca-JBS to negotiate an agreement in line with best practices in the sector.

From the moment the strike was announced on January 13, Inalca-JBS management had time to enter into good faith negotiations with the unions. The company, instead, chose to post leaflets all over the plant saying “With today’s strike the unions have reached a point of no return!”.

Unions have made it clear that if Inalca-JBS continues to refuse a more constructive dialogue there will be more strikes at Castelvetro.