Schreiber Dynamix Dairies India has launched a vicious attack on workers and their union.
The Company, was formed in 2004, as a result of acquisition of Dynamix Dairies, one of India’s most modern milk processing plants, by Schrieber, one of the top multinationals in dairy food processing. It has its main plant in Baramati, Maharashtra. In addition to Schreiber cheese products, the factory produces branded dairy drinks and other beverages for major global companies such as Nestle, GSK, PepsiCo and Unilever. The factory also supplies cheese to McDonald’s and Pizza Hut throughout India.
Despite cutting edge technology and new investment to produce global brands, each with a separate plant within the Schreiber Dynamix Dairies complex, more than half the workforce is based on contract labour, with 393 contract workers and 384 permanent workers. Of the 128 women workers at the factory 125 were contract workers and only 3 have permanent jobs.
All of the contract workers were hired as "gardening" and "cleaning service" staff, but in fact worked in skilled jobs in production alongside permanent workers, many for 5 to 10 years. They are paid the legal minimum wage of just Rs.110 per day and are denied any of the benefits that permanent workers enjoyed.
The Schreiber Dynamix Dairies Employees Union has been fighting to end this discrimination against contract workers, and for their regularlisation. As soon as the Union began holding meetings, police were roped in to threaten the Union. As the struggle developed in May and June, the contract workers were effectively terminated by preventing them from entering the plant. The company has replaced these contract workers with another 300 contract workers. Fabricated criminal charges have been levelled against the Union President, and attempts are being made to make him Tadi Par (evicted from the district).