Members at Anheuser-Busch’s breweries in the United States have voted to ratify a new five-year agreement by 88 to 12 percent, with 63 percent of members voting. The contract covers more than 4,400 workers at 12 facilities across the U.S.
“This contract provides our members at Anheuser-Busch with the solid wages, excellent benefits and job security they deserve,” said Jim Hoffa, Teamsters General President. “Our members work hard to make this company successful, and this contract recognizes their efforts.”
Wage increases, improvements to retirement security and a ratification bonus were all included in the new contract which went into effect March 1, 2019 and has a five-year term. As with the previous agreements, it maintains excellent benefits and job security.
In another victory for workers, the Teamsters National Negotiating Committee argued successfully for a memorandum of understanding with Anheuser-Busch to keep a commitment for all 12 breweries to remain open for the term of the agreement.
“Our negotiating committee listened to the membership and negotiated a contract that provides job security and financial security for these hardworking men and women for the next five years,” said Greg Nowak, Director of the Teamsters Brewery and Soft Drink Conference. “I’m proud of the work of the committee and look forward to implementing the new agreement.”
“Everyone is happy with the new contract,” said Ryan Smith, a Local 633 member working at the Merrimack, N.H. brewery for the past seven years. “The rest of the negotiating team did a good job and spent a lot of time listening to members to get their feedback on what they wanted in the new contract.”
The Merrimack brewery not only makes the famous A-B brands Budweiser and Bud Light, but also produces craft brews for Blue Point Brewing.
“More and more of Anheuser-Busch’s breweries have been branching out into craft beers since they have gained in popularity,” Nowak said. “We are pleased with this addition as it keeps our members working and provides a product that consumers enjoy.”
‘Good Union Job’
A member at the Baldwinsville, N.Y. brewery said they brew at least 63 different brands at her location alone and that she was grateful for the new contract.
“It’s a contract that I can live with, that I can retire with,” said Michele Buck, a member of Local 1149. “My father, brother and even my sister have all worked here. I know how important it is to have a good union job.”
All 12 Anheuser-Busch breweries in the U.S. employ members of the Teamsters who brew, bottle and package the brands produced by the company.
The brewery locations are: Los Angeles; St. Louis; Jacksonville, Fla.; Newark, N.J.; Houston; Fort Collins, Colo.; Williamsburg, Va.; Cartersville, Ga.; Merrimack, N.H.; Fairfield, Calif.; Columbus, Ohio; and Baldwinsville, N.Y.