Kroger Invests $281 Million in Houston Associates as Union Threatens Employee Gains


November 18th, 2021


UFCW Local 455 Wants to Take Associates Backwards in Health Care Benefits

While UFCW Local 455 continues to put politics over the interests of its members, Kroger Houston is investing $281 million in its associates including $56 million in wages and $75 million annually through April of 2023 to ensure access to reliable, affordable health care benefits.


Kroger’s $281 million investment in our associates provides well-deserved wage increases and ensures associates will not face benefit cuts as they did in their previous union-preferred health care plan,” said Laura Gump, president of Kroger’s Houston Division.


Here’s what this means for Kroger associates:


  • The average hourly wage for a Houston associate is $15 an hour. With our generous health care and retirement packages, the average total compensation in Houston is over $19 an hour. And during COVID, our associates earned between $1,000-$1,600 additional in the last year in appreciation for their hard work keeping Houston running with access to fresh food and other essentials. We will continue to increase employee wages and balance that against keeping our prices affordable for our customers.


  • In 2022, eligible Kroger Houston associates will pay just $36 for individual coverage or $184 for family coverage each month in a company-administered plan. By comparison, the Texas average per month for individual coverage is $124 and $579 for family coverage according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.


“This doesn’t make any sense as we firmly believe no one wins with a strike. Regardless, Kroger will continue to invest in our associates while ensuring reliable access to affordable food and supplies for the Houston community,” continued Gump.


Kroger will continue to be transparent throughout the negotiation process with our associates and with the public. We will continue to do what’s right for our associates. Our focus remains on our associates and getting an agreement at the bargaining table.




About The Kroger Co.

At The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR), we are Fresh for Everyone™ and dedicated to our Purpose: To Feed the Human Spirit®. We are, across our family of companies, nearly half a million associates who serve over 11 million customers daily through a seamless shopping experience under a variety of banner names. We are committed to creating #ZeroHungerZeroWaste communities by 2025. To learn more about us, visit our newsroom and investor relations site.


About Kroger Houston

The Kroger Houston Division operates more than 100 stores in SE Texas and Louisiana and employs more than 18,000 associates. Last year, Kroger Houston donated $1.9M to local non-profit organizations and schools and donated 2.6M pounds of food to local food banks through its #ZeroHungerZeroWaste initiative.