The Hammonton-based union representing 800 Superfresh workers in southern New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware has negotiated a new contract to be voted on Monday.
The proposed contract, which would expire in February 2013, comes after 15 months of sluggish negotiations between United Food and Commercial Workers Local 152 and Superfresh's parent company, A&P.
Local 152 President Brian String said Thursday that the new contract would allow for wage increases over the next three years, a retroactive lump sum bonus payable once the contract is ratified and the employer continuing to pay 100 percent of health benefits. String would not break down the percentages of the wage increases.
The contract covers workers in "back-end" departments, such as meat, seafood and bakery at stores in Cape May Court House, Ocean City, Wildwood, Hammonton and Stafford Township.
Local 152 worked out a similar contract in December for Superfresh managers and clerks at those same stores. String said negotiations improved once a new labor relations team was brought in during the summer.
A call to A&P, based in Montvale, Bergen County, was not returned Thursday.
Local 152 expects to begin bargaining with Acme parent company Supervalu Inc. later this month. A new contract involves cashiers and clerks at 17 Acmes, including in Atlantic, Cape May and Cumberland counties.
Acme is still in negotiations with Local 152's sister union, UFCW Local 1360 in Berlin Township, Camden County. The two sides have failed to agree on a new contract since April, and union members threatened to walk off the job last fall.
String expects negotiations for his union to go smoother: "I don't foresee us being in the same situation as 1360," he said.
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