A factory in northern France that makes a quarter of the world's Nutella has been blockaded for a week. Key ingredients are reportedly running low and the owners have threatened to heavily fine the strikers.
Around 160 employees at a French confection factory owned by the Italian confectionery giant Ferrero have been on strike since May 27, causing disruption in the production of a popular breakfast spread for millions of Europeans.
Speaking to reporters on Monday, Fabrice Canchel, spokersperson for the "Force Ouvriere" (FO) union that organized the strikes said that workers at the factory were negotiating for more pay,and that no delivery truck had gone in or out of the facility since the strike began.
The AFP news agency reported that the factory's management issued an internal memo threatening legal action to regain access to the factory, including fines of up to €1,000 ($1,125) per hour.
An official statement from the factory's management said that the strikers were notified that the starting Monday morning if they failed to allow access to the factory. 160 of the factory's 350 workers are reportedly on strike.
Workers want more pay
The striking workers are calling for a 4.5% pay raise, along with a a €900 bonus. Ferrero has reportedly offered only a 0.4% raise.
Ferrero France said that it had engaged in "six days of attempted discussions that were all rejected by FO."
Nutella production been hampered in recent years, partly due to poor hazelnut crops in Turkey. Ferrero employs over 30,000 people worldwide.