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IKEA and workers at the Swedish furniture maker's Perryville distribution facility avoided a late-night strike Friday when the sides agreed to a two-week extension of contract talks.

The union representing more than 500 workers at the center had overwhelmingly rejected the latest contract proposal from the company's management during a vote Friday and approved a strike after midnight once the current agreement expired.

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The union had asked the company to resume negotiations after the vote, said George Bull Miller, president of the Local I-460 of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. The company came back to the table.

"We will continue to work toward an agreement that works for the good of our co-workers and our business," the company said in a statement. "In the meantime, the IKEA Perryville distribution center will continue to operate."

Miller had said the workers and management were far apart on negotiations that centered on a $1-an-hour pay increase and holiday leave, including Thanksgiving Day. Workers now earn between $13.65 and $20 an hour.

The distribution facility opened in 2002 and transports products to 39 IKEA stores in the United States and Canada.

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