HelloFresh workers in Richmond vote against unionization

HelloFresh workers in Richmond vote against unionization
Photo credit: HelloFresh

Workers at HelloFresh’s distribution center in Richmond voted 289-198 against an effort to unionize, according to company officials.

Unite Here, the labor union representing over 300,000 workers in the U.S. and Canada, had attempted a well-publicized campaign to encourage workers at the Richmond facility to form the meal-kit industry’s first-ever union. Voting among workers began Nov. 15, and votes were tallied today. Last month, a similar effort by Unite Here was also rejected by workers at HelloFresh’s Aurora, Colo., factory by a vote of 166-91.

Unite Here has been accusing HelloFresh of profiting from the pandemic while its workers endured unsafe conditions. But some workers called the union’s claims false or exaggerated and a ploy to take money from their checks for union dues.

In a statement, a HelloFresh spokesperson said the election result affirms that its employees “do not want to be represented by Unite Here.”

“We are grateful for all the employees who participated in these elections, no matter how they voted,” the spokesperson said, adding, “HelloFresh prioritizes its employees’ health, safety and wellbeing above all else. The company is committed to taking care of its employees, and we are proud to be an employer of choice in every community in which we operate.”

In a statement reported by a labor reporter on Twitter, Unite Here International President D.Taylor said the union has filed a charge of “unfair labor” practices alleging that HelloFresh deployed “anti-union tactics” prior to the union vote in Richmond.

For more information, see our previous story on the issue here.