Employees at the Trader Joe's grocery store in Hadley, Massachusetts, have taken a big step forward in their efforts to unionize.

Employees were able to cast their votes on Thursday. Two National Labor Relations Board agents tallied the votes with 45 employees in favor of unionizing and 31 opposed — of the 76 employees eligible to vote.

Catherine Terrell, a field attorney with the National Labor Relations Board, said those in favor of forming a union and those opposed have seven days to file objections to the election before the votes are certified.

"A sufficient number of votes was cast for the labor organization. The parities have seven days to file objections to the election before the votes are certified," she said.

The Hadley Trader Joe's would be the first of the chain's locations in the country to unionize if the votes are certified.

In a statement Trader Joe's United members celebrated what they are calling a "historic victory."

"We are incredibly proud of the work we have done together to win this union election, but winning is just the beginning," the statement reads.

Union efforts began in May when employees notified Trader Joe's president, Dan Bane, of their intentions in a letter to the company's California headquarters.

Trader Joe's corporate headquarters also issued a statement saying it is prepared to begin discussions to negotiate a contract.

"We are willing to use any current union contract for a multi-state grocery company with stores in the area, selected by the union representatives, as a template to negotiate a new structure for the employees in this store; including pay, retirement, healthcare, and working conditions such as scheduling and job flexibility," the statement reads.

This is a developing story.