© DNO Produce (United Fresh)
Italy’s fruit sector has sounded the alarm: there is a shortage of workers, from the fields to the warehouse. The measures that the Italian government are taking to prevent migrants entering the country are hurting the agricultural sector which for so long has depended on the flexibility these workers provide. From the north to the south of the country, the situation is the same.
Some 90,000 workers are needed this summer on UK farms. Nevertheless, there is a real danger that the UK’s fruit producers will not have sufficient workers to harvest the bumper fruit crop expected this year. Although the spring weather means a slightly delayed harvest, fruit yields should be good this year, which is vital at this time of year as the UK consumes 34,000 kg of strawberries over the fortnight of the Wimbledon tennis tournament. Scotland and the north of the country are worst affected by the lack of labour as their relatively shorter seasons make the jobs less attractive.