AFL-CIO Backs Sugar Boycott

By KBJR News 1

AFL-CIO Backs Sugar Boycott

October 19, 2012 Updated Oct 19, 2012 at 6:40 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (Northlands NewsCenter)
-- Area union members are calling for a boycott of sugar to protest the lock out of more than 1,000 employees.

American Crystal Sugar in Eastern Minnesota and Western North Dakota has gone 14 months without a contract for their 1,300 workers.

Now the AFL-CIO is endorsing a sugar boycott.

Friday they brought this message to Duluth, passing out flyers at the Target store.

Spokespeople say the lock-out in the Red River Valley has union members fired up across the county.

"An attack against one is an attack against us all. 1,300 working men and women, whether it be in Fargo or Moorhead is the same thing as 1,300 men and women being locked out of a plant here in Duluth."

American Crystal Sugar responded by saying they made a fair offer to get their employees back to work, including at 17 percent pay increase over five years and an increased pension package.

Their spokesman said the unions rejected that offer.