The grocery workers in the Washington DC area are thinking about going on strike.

The president of the union representing 18,000 Washington area Giant Food and Safeway Inc. employees believes “there is a serious possibility” that upcoming contract negotiations will break down, possibly resulting in a strike against one or both supermarket chains.

Meanwhile, Virginia Postrel reports,

A number of readers wrote in response to my post about hand-held scanners that let you ring up your groceries as you shop.

…It’s pretty clear that grocery checkout clerks are going to go the way of bank tellers. They won’t disappear altogether, but there will be many fewer of them. Grocery employees will have to add value to the customer’s experience, not simply process their purchases.

For Discussion. What would you do if you were the head of the grocery-workers union?