Local drivers for Imperfect Foods, the grocery delivery service specializing in “rescued” produce, have voted to officially unionize. Drivers working out of the company’s Clackamas facility are joining United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 555, which also represents workers at groceries like Safeway, Albertsons, and Fred Meyer.
The newly unionized employees hope to negotiate for higher wages, guaranteed raises, safety standards, and fairly distributed delivery routes, though the union does plan to solidify the goals of their upcoming contract bargaining through union member surveys. The union will not include warehouse workers and other employees at the Clackamas location, according to National Labor Relations Board documents. “The value that delivery drivers have brought to this company, turning it from a niche startup to a household name, can’t be overstated,” says Imperfect Foods driver Moira McCarthy in a press release.
In 2015, Ben Simon, Ron Clark, and Benjamin Chesler cofounded a startup aimed at salvaging grocery items that would be taken off shelves for non-safety-related reasons, like cosmetic irregularities or size. It started with produce, eventually expanding to include things like cheese, snacks, and pantry staples. With a boost of venture capital funding, Imperfect Foods now delivers groceries in more than 35 states. A group of the company’s California drivers unionized in 2021.
Imperfect Foods has yet to comment on the recent union vote.