ATCHISON, KAS. — Local #74D of the United Food and Commercial Workers (U.F.C.W.) Union on July 15 ratified a new five-year collective bargaining unit agreement with MGP Ingredients, Inc. The agreement, which covers union employees at the company’s Atchison plant, takes effect on Aug. 3 and extends through Aug. 31, 2014.

"We are very pleased with the outcome of yesterday’s vote by members of the union local," said Dave Rindom, vice-president of human resources at MGPI. "My sincerest compliments go out to the union’s negotiating team and overall membership for the exemplary manner in which discussions were held and thoughts exchanged regarding the various components of this agreement."

Jason Simmers, president of Local #74D, said the contract shows the union’s willingness to improve the conditions at MGPI amid challenging economic times.

"Our members have elected to bear a lower financial package than would have been anticipated otherwise in hopes of helping support a stronger, more secure company for the future," Mr. Simmers said.

The previous labor contract between the company and Local 74D ran from Sept. 1, 2005, through Aug. 31, 2008. Following the rejection of a new two-year agreement proposed by the company last summer, the union enacted a work stoppage at the Atchison plant that lasted from Sept. 27 through Oct. 10. The work stoppage ended when union members voted in favor of the company’s offer to reinstate the previous contract through August 2009.