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Ahold USA's Carlisle, Pa.-based Giant Food Stores and Martin's Food Markets will increase the starting associate wage to $9 per hour, beginning June 7, at which time the sister banners will also raise the hourly wage for current associates to at least $9 an hour.
"Our associates are the foundation of our success, and we have always believed in paying competitive wages to attract the best talent," noted Giant/Martin's President Tom Lenkevich. "We believe that this is the right thing to do. Our goal is to continue to be an employer of choice by offering a competitive total compensation package, a work environment based upon respect, an emphasis on personal excellence and opportunities for career advancement."
The change applies to the 197 non-union Giant/Martin's stores. About 10,000 Giant/Martin's part-time associates will be affected by the wage increase. Giant/Martin's employs 33,000 associates, about two-thirds of whom current earn more than $9 an hour, according to the retailer.
The move comes in the wake of Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s well-publicized pay raise for its approximately 500,000 employees, which Progressive Grocer previously reported and which takes effect this month. Other retailers have also followed suit with pay increases for hourly workers, including Target Corp. and T.J. Maxx and Marshalls' owner TJX, the latter of which also plans to boost its minimum wage to $9 per hour in June.
The announcement relates only to Giant/Martin's, which operates almost 200 grocery stores in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia. The compensation packages for Ahold USA's other division store associates are collectively bargained with unions that represent those associates.