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Oktoberfest Facing Pretzel Shortage If German Bakers Go On Strike

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An Oktoberfest pretzel. | Chad Buchanan via Getty Images

What's a giant stein of Oktoberfest beer without an even bigger pretzel to go with it? Festival-goers in Germany could find out if Bavarian bakers follow through on their strike threat.

The region's 48,000 union bakers want a 6.5 percent wage hike, according to Focus. But negotiations have been knotted up, and time is running out.

Despite the name, the modern Oktoberfest begins in mid-to-late September. This year, it starts on Sept. 20, and if the bakers don't have a new contract in place before then, the ovens are being turned off.

"If we don't get any further by mid-September, we'll strike in the bakeries," Mustafa Oz of the The Nahrung-Genuss-Gaststätten food and beverage union (NGG) told Focus in a translation from iTV. "Then there'll be a lack of pretzels and bread rolls."

Festival organizers told NBC News they have a supplier who plans to keep them rolling in dough throughout the event. However, if they do fall short, there's a backup plan.

"We just have to drink more beer,” Toni Roiderer, owner of the Hacker beer tent, told NBC.

(h/t Time)

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