Panicked Brits could be faced with turkey shortage this Christmas

An upcoming strike could leave panicked Brits a bird or two short for their Christmas dinner, with a shortage of turkeys expected this year.

Members of staff at the Food Standards Agency (FSA) striking in the coming weeks and months could lead to Christmas meat shortages, their union has warned.

Staff represented by Unison are being balloted for a strike action over a pay dispute following a rejection of a pay rise that was far below the rate of inflation.

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Failing to shore up a pay rise could mean meat shortages for everyone at the most wonderful time of the year, with hundreds of inspectors set to strike across the UK, delaying turkey orders.

Vets and office-based staff are also set to join inspectors in England, Wales and Northern Ireland that, should they vote to walk, would bring the industry to a halt.

A vote earlier this year rejected a pay offer of between 2-5%, with unions demanding a hefty 10% increase to their pay packets.

Should members vote in favour of a strike, it would be the first time members of the FSA have participated in a strike since Friday (October 14).

The FSA is not the only union voting on strike actions in the coming months.

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Up to one in 16 employees could be set for strike action in the next few months, with The Independent reporting that 1.9million people are either set for strike or ready to vote on the possibility of one.

Junior doctors, nurses and teachers are three professions among many that are potentially set to strike in a fight to increase worker wages across the country.

The Trades Union Congress may begin coordinating industrial action as soon as this week, with Union head of local government Mike Short saying: "FSA staff play a vital role in keeping contaminated meat off people’s plates.

"These employees protect consumers, ensure good animal welfare, and must be rewarded accordingly. The FSA needs to come up with a significantly higher offer to avoid any disruption."

Should the FSA strike, the organisation is said to have "contingency plans" in place, according to head of field operations Robert Locker.

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