Union wants Asda to match competitors’ wage rises

The GMB union has criticised supermarket giant Asda for “falling even further behind competitors on wages” after Sainsbury’s confirmed another pay boost.

Sainsbury’s has today said its workers would get at least £11 per hour from February. GMB says Asda retail workers receive £10.10 per hour.

But Leeds-headquartered Asda has hit back at the union’s comments, pointing out that it has already increased its retail workers’ pay twice within the last 12 months.

GMB has been campaigning for Asda to boost pay to £11.50 per hour. The union has also called on Asda bosses to provide free food to colleagues while they are on shift during the cost of living crisis.

Nadine Houghton, GMB National Officer, said: “Sainsbury’s and Argos hourly retail colleague pay will increase from £10.25 to £11 per hour and from £11.30 to £11.95 per hour in London.

“Sainsbury’s has also decided to extend free food during shifts for store and depot colleagues by a further six months.

“If it’s good enough for Sainsburys workers why is it not good enough for Asda workers?

“Asda is an outlier in the retail industry, because it refuses to negotiate with its union on wages – unlike other retailers.

“That’s why they keep getting it wrong on pay – because they aren’t listening to its workers and instead agree the pay rates in an echo chamber. Surely Asda bosses don’t think Sainsbury’s workers are somehow worth more?”

The Asda spokesman responded: “We have increased retail colleague pay twice during the last 12 months and will confirm our new pay rates for 2023 to colleagues during quarter one, following the outcome of negotiations with USDAW where we have a pay bargaining agreement.”