SEATTLE -- Union leaders for about 21,000 workers at four major grocery store chains in the Puget Sound area are threatening a strike at 7 p.m. Monday unless they reach an agreement on a labor contract with employers.

A strike by the United Food and Commercial Workers could affect QFC, Safeway, Albertsons and Fred Meyer stores in King, Snohomish, Pierce, Kitsap, Thurston and Mason counties.

Issues include wages, holiday pay and health care benefits.

The grocery stores are negotiating through the Allied Employers group. It says it wants a solid pay and benefits package that for workers that allows the companies to be competitive.

The last grocery strike in the area in 1989 lasted nearly three months.

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