The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

Grocery chain closes in Michigan

Jul 2, 2007

The giant A&P grocery chain closed its Farmer Jack unit in Michigan. The 4,800 workers at the 66 stores suddenly found themselves unemployed.

Certain stores will be bought by other grocers. Kroger will cherry-pick 20 stores it wants in the area around Detroit. Kroger says it will interview Farmer Jack workers but will not promise anything. However, one thing is clear: no matter how many years a worker may have had at Farmer Jack – it will be lower wages, even if he or she does get that Kroger job.

One company buys and sells another company that buys and sells another company – that’s the unrestrained way of bosses today. Twenty years ago, grocery store workers made almost as much as auto wages. But every buy and every sell was just another excuse to chop more deeply into the companies’ labor costs.

Should the workers who stock and check out the groceries have to go hungry themselves? No!