General Industries Workers Union of South Africa

The #CloverStrike and International Solidarity

The strike is a manifestation of the power of workers to resist poverty and exploitation under capitalism and it requires working class solidarity to be won! This solidarity is being called for through a PUBLIC BOYCOTT OF ALL CLOVER PRODUCTS.

Photo by Kaung Htet

A short background on the Clover Strike

In 2019, Clover was bought out by MILCO Consortium, which is led by racist, imperialist Israel’s top manufacturer and distributor of beverages, Central Bottling Company (CBC) for R4 800 000 000!

R4.8 BILLION, yet workers are having to fight against wage slashes, retrenchments, factory closures and for decent working conditions that don’t see them:

GIWUSA on the ground

All of this for earnings that fall so far below a living wage, workers can barely survive!

Clover is a Multibillion Rand Company and the biggest employer in the Dairy Industry in South Africa, employing approximately 9000 workers. We reject the brutalities of Clover, seemingly intent on destroying the lives and bodies of workers for profit, recklessly continuing poverty wages, and endlessly repeating its history of vicious, relentless attacks against the rights of all workers in South Africa!


On the 22nd of November 2021, Clover workers organised under GIWUSA and the Food and Allied Workers Union (FAWU) embarked on indefinite strike action against austerity, retrenchments, wage cuts and the MILCO/CBC take-over of Clover. More than four months later, the strike is ongoing, with Clover stubbornly and arrogantly refusing to meet the demands of striking workers.

We are calling for the nationalisation of Clover under democratic control and management of workers, communities and consumers. In doing so, we will defend jobs, ensure decent wages and conditions for workers, and affordable, quality dairy products for starving and poor communities.

Solidarity with Palestinians Struggling Against Apartheid Israel

On the 21st of December 2021, the Palestine Solidarity Alliance published a statement in the Daily Vox in support of striking Clover Workers. Below are excerpts from the statement:

"The plight of striking workers and the Palestinian masses are sadistically entwined in the merciless arms of colonial occupiers. Now is the time to stand together by supporting the demands of striking workers..." "Demands for better wages and working conditions are demands for families to have food on the table, spend quality time together, and dignified living conditions. Demands against factory closures are demands to restructure urban-peripheral relations in ways that do not leave former Bantustans as sites of surplus labour and extraction. The demand to nationalise MILCO is a demand for the South African government to step in to provide food security, employment, and dignity to a country with more than half its population below the poverty line and record levels of unemployment. It is a demand to kick Apartheid off its shores"

GIWUSA on the ground

The Demands of Striking Clover Workers



MILCO/CBC’s disinvestment from Clover



The nationalisation of Clover under democratic worker control


Reinstatement & Halting of Retrenchments

The reinstatement of all retrenched workers and an immediate halt to all planned retrenchments



Scrap and withdraw all of the R300 million austerity measures

For an agreement period of one year:


Wage Increase

A 10% wage increase across the board, or a R2 000 wage adjustment, whichever is greater


Medical Aid Coverage

For the company to contribute 100% towards Medical Aid


Overtime Compensation

For voluntary work on Sundays and public holidays to be paid at double time


Provident Fund Restructuring

A total restructuring of the Clover Provident Fund


Job Security

All labour broker employees must be made permanent


Full-Time Employment

Five hour merchandisers must be scrapped and these positions must be converted to full time. Merchandisers who work six days a week, must get one day off per month


Salary Grading

Relevant salary grading

How the Public can Show Solidarity with the Clover Strike

The #CloverStrike must be re-inforced by principled solidarity from the broader working classes, if the workers of Clover are to triumph over the exploitative, ruthless corporation. Members of the public are encouraged to display their solidarity by:

GIWUSA on the ground

The Clover Strike in the Media

Noxolo Majavu March 11, 2022

Digruntled Clover employees: ‘They are importing milk from occupied territories in Palestine’

Striking Clover workers flocked the main entrance at the head office. Clad in their red union T-shirts, they picketed and sang while heavily armed security guards manned the gates and police vans parked on the side of the road.

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Noxolo Majavu 11 February 2022

Unions claim Clover hired hitmen to attack striking workers

They have accused the dairy giant of stalling before it called an ambulance when striking workers were kidnapped and beaten for hours outside Clover’s premises in Clayville in Olifantsfontein, Gauteng – in full view of the company’s management – on Monday.

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Masego Mafata 10 February 2022

Striking workers claim they were attacked at Clover plant

One worker has been in hospital since Monday. Clover workers have been on strike since November.

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Pavan Kulkarni January 28, 2022

Global mobilizations mark two months of the strike at South Africa’s dairy giant

Unions and Palestinian solidarity organizations have escalated actions calling for the South African government to disinvest from Clover the Milco consortium, which is majority-owned by an Israeli company operating in occupied territories of Palestine.

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Noxolo Majavu January 19, 2022

Clover admits to not paying workers their full 13th cheque, employees shot at with rubber bullets

The 13th cheque bonuses were due to be paid on January 14 as ordered by the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) last Monday.

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Anna Majavu November 23, 2021

Clover workers strike against long hours and less pay

The dairy company wants to retrench workers, move to a 12-hour day six days a week and ignore public holidays. Unions also fear it will close factories and pivot to distributing Israeli products.

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