National | Media Release

National Farmers Union in Support of Striking Metro Workers

The National Farmers Union (NFU) stands in solidarity with striking Metro workers and their union, Unifor Local 414. No matter whether you are a checkout worker demanding fair wages, a farmer calling for fair prices, or a Canadian trying to feed yourself and your family, Metro’s record-breaking profit comes at the expense of everyone.

More than 3,700 Metro grocery workers at 27 stores across the Greater Toronto Area have been on strike since July 29. Workers are striking for wage increases that keep up with the escalating cost of living, benefits, and job security against the threat of automation. Metro workers have shared that low wages mean that many can’t afford to buy their groceries at the store which employs them.

Corporate concentration allows food retailers and processors to suppress commodity prices and wages while benefiting from food price inflation. Farmers and grocery store workers share the experience of being caught between rising costs and stagnating compensation for their labour. The NFU has compared farmgate prices farmers receive for their crops and livestock to the prices that grocers and other food retailers receive for the food they sell. The gap between these two prices—farmgate and retail—has steadily widened over recent decades, with companies like Metro Inc. capturing ever larger shares of the money Canadians spend on food.

Farmers, workers, and consumers share the common interest of challenging corporate power in order to create a more just food system.