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CINCINNATI - The Kroger Co. said members of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1529 approved two new labor contracts covering approximately 6,500 employees in Memphis, western Tennessee, and Mississippi.
The new four-year contract for clerks provides annual wage increases that will raise the top hourly rate for department heads to as much as $15.80 by the last year of the agreement. The top rate for full-time clerks will increase to $12.16 per hour by the last year of the contract, while the top rate for part-time clerks will increase to $9.50 per hour over that period.
The second contract, which covers meat, seafood, and deli employees, provides annual wage increases that will raise the top hourly rate for meat department heads to as much as $17.77 by the end of the contract. The new top rate for deli department heads will match the department head rates in the clerk agreement.
In both contracts Kroger also will increase what it pays to provide health care benefits to employees by up to 8 percent annually.
"We are pleased to have a new contract in place that balances our employees' need for competitive wages, health care benefits, and pensions with the company's need to address the significant economic and competitive threats facing our business," said Dick Tillman, president of Kroger's Delta division in Memphis.