Olymel’s management has announced resumption of operations at its hog slaughterhouse and cutting plant at Vallée-Jonction, in Beauce, Que.
The result of the vote by members of the Olymel workers union at the location ratified the agreement in principle and return-to-work protocol reached on August 29. The vote puts an end to the strike that began on April 28, and begins a new six-year collective agreement will expire in March of 2027.
Olymel has already taken steps to resume operations as soon as possible, but must first ensure that all equipment is in working order, that the plant is sanitary, and that workers are available to form teams for the day and evening shifts. Best-case scenario, the company says they will resume slaughtering as early as Friday, September 3.
In a statement by Olymel, management says it will maintain the evening shift at the location. All 1,050 employees will be called back to work.
“Olymel is relieved to have been able to reach a common ground with union members at the Vallée-Jonction plant. Working conditions and employee compensation will thus be improved, while maintaining the company’s ability to operate in a highly competitive market,” says Paul Beauchamp, first vice president. “Such a long strike is still to be deplored and lessons will have to be learned. The management of Olymel, for its part, will do everything in its power to ensure that plant operations resume in a calm and constructive atmosphere. Furthermore, I would like to highlight the great resilience of the pork producers heavily affected by this conflict.”
The Vallée-Jonction plant will gradually regain its weekly slaughter capacity of approximately 35,000 hogs, says the company.