The workers at a Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, factory that makes Peeps, as well as Mike and Ikes and Hot Tamales, went on strike in September—and our supply of next year’s Easter Peeps are at risk, according to a Huffington Post story.
Can’t you just see the CNN Breaking News segment: “Peeps Held Hostage: Day 9.”
Just Born Quality Confections is the company in question, and the workers are protesting their new wage and benefit proposals. HuffPo’s story goes on to say that Just Born wants to eliminate its pension plan in favor of a 401(k).
The company suggests phasing out the pension plan slowly, and they’d still contribute to current associates’ pensions. New hires would enroll in a 401(k) plan. The union says the company wants to up employee healthcare contributions and hasn’t offered “sufficient wage increases.”
Easter is a long time off, you say. Well, what about our Halloween and Christmas Peeps? Those orders are already completed and Halloween Peeps have shipped. Phew!
One member of the union says the strike was timed to intentionally impact Easter production.
“We held out [until now], because it kind of hits them the hardest,” Just Born Package handler Debbie Harden told the Morning Call.
This story from Pittsburgh’s Action News 4 indicates the company is hiring replacement workers.
The strikers have a slogan: “No pension, no Peeps.” And here’s what they have to say:
And here’s the company’s view:
If the Peeps shortage does indeed come to pass, what is this guy gonna do?
Photo by James Jordan