Sunrise is the processor and distributor of fresh chicken, meat and non-meat products. Founded in 1983 in Surrey, the company grew to 1,300 employees and six processing plants in 1983 in 1983, in Alberta, Alberta and Ontario. "We represent three plants here in British Columbia," says Balmer. "You are a subsistence wage employer who seems to understand the connection between a fair collective agreement, a productive organization and, ultimately, profit." Approximately 450 members of UFCW 1518 working for Sunrise Poultry have ratified a new collective agreement with significant benefits, making it the strongest contract in the B.C. poultry industry. "There is no doubt that these members are now the highest paid poultry workers in Colombia - if not North America," says Director Kim Balmer. Balmer: "This round of negotiations has been an asset to all: our members receive fair pay for the work they do and the employer gets productive employment. Fair trade, I`d say. On 16 July, members voted overwhelmingly in favour of the four-year contract. The bargaining committee, made up of members of Ray Sereduik, Charles Loro, Jesse McCormick and Chief Shop Steward Kevin Sparkes, and supported by union representative Tony Evangelista and director Kim Balmer, had unanimously recommended ratification. A highlight was a pay increase of between 8 and 12 per cent, with retroactive effect as of July 1, 2016. There were also increases for most health and wellness services and a $100 signing bonus.