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LOUISVILLE Ky. -- Some 700 unionized truck drivers, mechanics and warehouse employees at a Kroger Co. distribution center in eastern Jefferson County near here walked off the job before noon Wednesday morning.
Fred Zuckerman, president of Teamsters Local 89, was quoted in local press reports as saying the workers walked out after talks broke down between the union and two companies that operate the facility for Kroger: Transervice Logistics; and Zenith Logistics.
Transervice president Ed Flannigan confirmed that negotiations with the Teamsters had broken down, and that the company was attempting to keep the distribution center open despite the job action.
The distribution center supplies produce, dry goods, and dozens of other items to Kroger stores across Kentucky and much of southern Indiana.
Kroger spokeswoman Meghan Glynn said the company is working with the two businesses that operate the distribution center to keep products headed to stores.
"Kroger stores remain open for business as usual," Glynn said. "While this is unfortunate, and we hope the third parties resolve it quickly, it will not disrupt our stores or the service our customers have come to expect."
Kroger said last fall that it was planning to transfer management of the facility to Transervice and Zenith Logistics, as part of an efficiency measure.