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Sugar strike threat at Suffolk British Sugar factory lifted after 'sweet' pay deal accepted, says union

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Union leaders say they have called off a strike ballot of sugar factory workers - including staff based in Suffolk - after an improved pay offer was accepted.

Officials from the Unite union revealed their intention to ballot British Sugar personnel in June, after a two per cent pay award from the company was turned down.

The dispute affected workers at the firm's Wissington factory in Norfolk, as well as sites at Newark and Cantley, near Bury St Edmunds.

British Sugar's Wissington sugar beet factory near Stoke Ferry.. (48738769)
British Sugar's Wissington sugar beet factory near Stoke Ferry.. (48738769)

But, today, the union announced it had cancelled the ballot after members voted to accept a new offer of a 3.5 per cent increase.

Unite says the dispute affected around 500 technicians, engineers and supply chain staff across the three sites.

Regional officer Mark Plumb said this morning: “This sweet pay deal was achieved because our members stood firm in demanding a rise that reflected their hard work and dedication to British Sugar.

“It is a prime example of what can be achieved through strong union organisation, which is why we urge workers looking to improve their pay and terms and conditions to join Unite and to get their colleagues to do the same.

“Unite looks forward to working productively with British Sugar in the future for the best interests of our members, as the company continues to go from strength to strength.”

A British Sugar spokesman said: “We are pleased to have reached agreement on our pay offer for our factory based people.”

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