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Most John Deere workers reject tractor manufacturer’s contract offer

MOLINE, Ill. – The vast majority of members of the United Auto Workers union on Sunday rejected a contract offer from Deere & Co. that would have increased the number of workers who make John Deere tractors and other equipment by at least 5%.

“The tentative deal reached by the UAW and John Deere was rejected tonight by a majority of 90% of the membership,” UAW Vice President Chuck Browning said in a statement Sunday evening.

Negotiators will return to the negotiating table on Monday to try to find a new deal to cover more than 10,000 workers at 14 factories across the United States. The union has set a strike deadline of 11:59 p.m. Wednesday.

Officials at the Moline, Illinois-based company said operations will continue as normal in the meantime. Brad Morris, vice president of labor relations at Deere, said he was disappointed the offer was turned down.

“After weeks of negotiations, John Deere reached tentative agreements with the UAW that would have dramatically improved our industries’ most comprehensive wages and benefits for our employees,” Morris said. “John Deere remains fully committed to continuing the collective bargaining process with the goal of better understanding the perspectives of our employees.

The proposed contract would have resulted in immediate increases of 5% for some workers and 6% for others depending on their position at Deere factories. The pact also provided for increases of 3% in 2023 and 2025.

Deere & Co. shares fell 1% on Monday morning.