The Edrington Group is in talks with union leaders to avoid industrial action. Up to 200 staff are threatening to disrupt the company's AGM later this week if negotiations do not resolve a dispute over a two-year pay proposal.

If talks between the two sides come to nothing, the staff will carry out their threat of industrial action which will bring warehouse operations and a bottling plant in Glasgow to a halt. The strike is planned for Thursday and Friday of this week and Monday next week.

Speaking to the Evening Times yesterday, Ian King of the GMB union said: "I want to avert industrial action by negotiating a deal which is acceptable to union members. But it's down to management."

An Edrington spokesman was reluctant to discuss the dispute with the newspaper, but said: "Hopefully, we can resolve this issue without industrial action."

Workers claim that directors awarded themselves pay rises of almost 20% while maintenance engineers have settled for a 7% rise over two years. They claim to have been offered a rise this year of 3.5% with a promise that next year's rise will match the rate of inflation, but they are demanding the same deal as the engineers.

The Edrington Group produces a range of whiskies including the Famous Grouse and Cutty Sark.