Tip Top bread should be back in supermarket aisles today following a two-day strike by Auckland bakery workers which left North Island supermarkets with empty shelves.
More than 100 workers at George Weston Foods' Ōtāhuhu and Wiri bakeries - makers of the Tip Top bread range as well as Ploughmans and Bürgen bread - went on strike on Sunday and Monday to ask for "a fair pay rise and a premium on overtime and night work".
Customers this week reported empty shelves at Countdown supermarkets in West Auckland, with one Herald reader forced to buy buns for her kids' sandwiches.
The Herald understands some supermarkets still had empty shelves this morning, three days after strike action finished.
However Mark Bosomworth, general manager of George Weston's baking division, said all bread stock would be back to normal in store from today.
First Union organiser Anita Rosentreter said George Weston had come back with a slightly improved offer, which she would be presenting to workers today.
"My expectation would be that the members would say it's still not an adequate offer and that may be followed with further strike action, but at this point in time I can't confirm when that would be."
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George Weston warned there would be a resulting shortage on supermarket shelves in the upper North Island as production of baked goods was halved in its Auckland factories.
Signs were seen in supermarkets warning customers of a bread shortage.
"Due to Tip Top going on strike there is limited bread available. We hope to have a full range soon," the signs read.
Countdown spokeswoman Kate Porter said this morning that, like other retailers, the company's supermarkets were experiencing bread supply issues in the upper North Island.
"We're working with our bread suppliers and in-store bakeries to increase bread production where we can and ensure there is plenty of choice available today for our customers."