Business

How workers voted on representation by Boise union at Eagle company’s Twin Falls plant

Lamb Weston french fries.
Lamb Weston french fries. Provided by Lamb Weston

Hourly workers at Lamb Weston’s Twin Falls potato-processing plant have said no to being represented by a union by a 4-to-1 margin.

Ninety-two percent of eligible employees voted to decide whether Teamsters Local 483, based in Boise, should represent them. The outcome: 439 no, 109 yes. The National Labor Relations Board oversaw the process, and Lamb Weston said the final vote must still be certified.

Lamb Weston, based in Eagle, is North America’s top maker of french fries and other frozen potato products. It was part of ConAgra, one of the nation’s biggest food manufacturers, until it was spun off last year.

The company is pleased with the outcome, which it believes creates a better working environment between employees and supervisors, said spokeswoman Shelby Stoolman.

“We value our people and we want to create a positive and productive work environment,” Stoolman said. “We’re continuing forward to work together as a unified team.”

Maintenance lead Tomas Cuellar, an employee of 25 years, was among the “no” votes.

“I think they got the message that we don’t need them,” he said. “To me, it was just a handful of employees that had issues, and it could have been taken care of through HR.”

He said he was glad a high percentage of employees voted.

Teamsters Local 483 did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

Some workers previously said the company had brought in a “union-busting firm” to intimidate workers, a charge Lamb Weston denied.

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