European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions
Together for decent work and fair pay from farm to fork

Froneri workers keep up the fight despite announced closure and job-cuts in Europe

16/11/2017

On 29 September 2017 the Froneri Group, a joint venture between Nestlé and R&R Ice Cream – held by the French private equity firm PAI Partners – announced the closure of the Parma plant in Italy, threatening 120 jobs and 70 seasonal positions, as well as many others related to satellite activities. Operating in 20 countries and employing more than 12,500 people, the group has three factories in central Italy: Parma, Ferentino (Frosinone) and Terni.

A meeting between the Company Management, local authorities and EFFAT’s affiliates FLAI-CGIL, FAI-CISL and UILA-UIL took place on 26 October and 6 November at the Ministry of Economic Development. Despite the pressure made by EFFAT member organisations, local authorities and the government representatives, the Company envisaged the closure of the company as the only solution and doesn't put forward any acceptable sustainable alternative outcome. As the plant production plays a crucial economic role for the region and the community, local authorities strongly support EFFAT affiliates. On 8 November Italian affiliates formed a permanent picket line – still ongoing-  in front of the plant gates to show the resilience of workers while promoting activities to engage the citizens in this fight. Yesterday a new meeting was scheduled for 27 November.

Alongside in Germany, Froneri workers at the former Nestlé factory in Uelzen (Lower Saxony) have been informed that the company intends to transfer the production to “more competitive factories’, threatening over 180 jobs equal to the 50% of the factory's workforce. Furthermore the company wants to withdraw from the branch agreement and replace it with an enterprise agreement which would lower wages and slash benefits. Following the announcement, a first negotiation round took place in Uelzen on Friday 6 October. While the NGG negotiating committee called for job security and guarantees, Froneri simply repeated its intention to fire 188 workers and implement its proposals. Talks have started with key MEPs and German Deputies involved in the matter. Furthermore NGG has announced a rally on 18 November in front of the town hall in Uelzen. Employees, family members and citizens are invited to  demonstrate strength and solidarity for workers, in defence of no interferences in the collective agreement

The German and Italian colleagues are in contact to give a joint repsonse to Froneri's industrial strategy, supported by EFFAT and IUF.

EFFAT sends a message of solidarity to hundreds of workers and their families in Germany and Italy, currently fighting against unfair dismissal and the risk of an uncertain future. We invite all affiliates to do the same and address their letters to:

Italy:                                       

FLAI CGIL: Mauro Macchiesi (mauro.macchiesi@flai.it), Pietro Ruffolo (pietro.ruffolo@flai.it)
FAI CISL : Attilio Cornelli (attilio.cornelli@cisl.it)
UILA UIL: Fabrizio De Pascale (fabriziodepascale@uila.it) Pietro Pellegrini (pietropellegrini@uila.it)

Germany:

NGG: Peter Schmidt (peter.schmidt@ngg.net)
Mikaela Rosenberg (Mikaela.rosenberg@ngg.net)

 

 

EFFAT is the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions. As a European Trade Union Federation representing 120 national trade unions from 35 European countries, EFFAT defends the interests of more than 22 million workers towards the European Institutions, European employers’ associations and transnational companies. EFFAT is a member of the ETUC and the European regional organisation of the IUF.