More than 1500 Komatiland Forests workers have downed tools after wage talks failed, the Food and Allied Workers' Union (Fawu) said on Tuesday.

Workers began striking in Mpumalanga, Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal on Monday, demanding a 15 percent wage increase across the board, said union spokeswoman Dominique Swartz.

“The offer from management is currently at eight percent.”

Komatiland Forests (KLF) owns and manages softwood saw log forestry assets in the three provinces. It has 18 plantations and its main business is forestry, timber-harvesting, timber-processing and related activities.

Workers are further demanding a pension fund, an adjustment to the tree climbing allowance and an increase in night shift, standby and related allowances.

“Our members want wage increases and other conditions to be backdated to April 1,” said Swartz. - Sapa