Southern California shoppers should soon learn whether their grocery aisles will remain open. Another wave of supermarket employees votes Saturday on whether to accept a deal to stave off a strike.
Members of several union locals will go to the polls Saturday, the second day of voting on the agreement their labor leaders negotiated early this week with the region's three largest grocery chains, Vons, Ralphs and Albertsons.
Union officials have urged the rank and file to ratify the plan, which they say addresses concerns about funding for the employees' health care plan.
The supermarket giants involved say the agreement would allow them to remain competitive.
In 2004, a four-month strike and lockout cost the industry $2 billion and left shoppers scrambling for other options.