Hundreds of workers on strike at Frito-Lay plant in Topeka

July 6, 2021 GMT

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — About 600 workers are on strike at the Frito-Lay plant in Topeka after union workers rejected a proposed contract that had been recommended by union leadership.

Workers said the main points of contention are small pay increases and employees being forced to work hours of overtime, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported.

The workers are represented by Local 218 of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers union, which recommended a proposed two-year contract after months of negotiations. Workers voted on Friday and Saturday to reject the contract, and the strike began at 12:01 a.m. Monday.

Frito-Lay is one of seven divisions of Harrison, N.Y.-based PepsiCo.

The company said in a statement that because the union leadership recommended the contract, it does not anticipate any further negotiations “for the foreseeable future.”

PepsiCo said the plant would continue to operate and it had a plan to ensure employee safety.