American Crystal refutes union claims that labor lockout has more than doubled beet-processing costs

By Mikkel Pates, INFORUM

American Crystal Sugar Co. officials deny new union claims that a labor lockout has more than doubled processing costs for beets harvested in 2011.

Company officials acknowledge that costs have increased, but say its farmer-owners already know about the costs, and say the company is seeing its replacement hires as a possible permanent workforce.

The Minnesota-AFL-CIO published a news release April 17, saying American Crystal’s bottom line “suffers due to ongoing lockout,” adding that the company is “burying numbers to hide real costs.”

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