- The company that owns Wonder Bread, Nature’s Own and Tastykake brands is the latest employer facing litigation from drivers who believe they are wrongly classified as independent contractors, according to the Wall Street Journal.
- Flowers Foods Inc., a $3.7 billion company, is different than other companies in misclassification litigation involving the "on-demand" business model. It operates in a more traditional scenario, delivering baked goods to retailers rather than dealing directly with consumers.
- In a similar case from 2015, FedEx Corp. said it would pay a $228 million settlement in California with thousands drivers when the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decided those drivers had been classified improperly, the Journal notes.
In an email to the Journal, Flowers discounted the legal merits of the case, adding that “the independent distribution model is a win-win where distributors, their customers, and the company benefit.” The company does have history on its side, as the Journal notes that Flowers has used independent drivers since the 1980s.
For their part, the drivers say are not really independent because Flowers tells them what locations to service and sets pricing and procedures directly with the retailers – an issue that has been raised in similar cases across the country.