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Coca-Cola Workers End 3-Week Strike in Ontario, Union Says

July 21 (Bloomberg) -- Workers at a Brampton, Ontario-based bottling plant operated by Coca-Cola Co., the world’s largest soda maker, ended a three-week strike after approving a three-year contract, the Canadian Auto Workers Union said in a statement today.

Production at the plant will resume tomorrow after the deal was approved by 83 percent of workers, according to the statement. Workers will receive pay increases in the second and third years of the contract and won an agreement “that would end demands to outsource existing work.”

“The real fight here was over the defined benefit pension plan, with Coca-Cola pushing us to move to a defined contribution plan,” Jerry Dias, assistant to the CAW National President, said in the statement. “We were ultimately successful in keeping the defined benefit pension plan and improving upon it.”

The union also negotiated a weekend-worker program that includes two 12-hour premium shifts to allow for 24-hour, seven day-a-week production, according to the statement.

A call to Kent Landers, a spokesman for Atlanta-based Coca-Cola, wasn’t immediately returned.

The Canadian Auto Workers Union represents about 700 employees at the bottling plant, according to the statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Matthew Leising in New York at mleising@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Sylvia Wier at swier@bloomberg.net

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