At an early morning labor dispute picket yesterday, a man dressed as Dunkin’ Donuts’ ‘Fred the Baker’ mimics the famous phrase ‘Time to make the doughnuts’ with ‘Time to make the contract.’ Matt Stone Photo

Jay Fitzgerald writes in the Boston Herald that a Dunkin’ Donuts supplier and Teamsters Local 25 traded harsh rhetorical blows yesterday as the two sides seemed to be headed toward a strike showdown.

The Teamsters union – which is trying to negotiate a contract for 180 recently organized workers at a Northeast DCP facility in Bellingham – held a protest rally outside a Dunkin’ Donuts shop in Boston’s Financial District.

More than 100 Teamsters passed out fliers and held signs with pictures of Dunkin’s old “Fred the Baker” spokesman bemoaning the lack of a new contract.

The protest appeared to hit a nerve at Northeast DCP, an independent company that supplies all the food and other items for the 2,200 Dunkin’ Donut shops across New England.

“Teamsters Protest Rather Than Negotiate,” blared the headline on a Northeast DCP press release. The company accused the Teamsters of walking out of contract talks because they want non-union employees to pay union dues.

“The Northeast DCP has been bargaining in good faith,” said Patty Healy, a company vice president.

Local 25 President Sean O’Brien said the firm is engaging in “stalling tactics” in an attempt to get the recently formed union decertified next month.

O’Brien said a strike may be “imminent at this point.”

Boston Herald