English crops left to rot as Brexit begins to bite

English crops left to rot in as Brexit begins to bite

English crops left to rot in as Brexit begins to bite Credit: Pixabay

English crops are being left to rot as Brexit begins to bite and the lack of migrant workers takes its toll.

Brexit has deterred many migrants from heading to the UK and now fruit and vegetables in England are being left to rot. Brexit began to kick in properly earlier this year and this has hit the number of migrant workers heading to England from Europe. Hiring workers has now become a hard task, and the effects of freedom of movement restrictions are being felt.

According to Euronews, farming company Barfoots of Botley who are based on the south coast of England have had to leave a staggering 750,000 courgettes to rot. Difficult decisions could be heading their way as they struggle to get staff to pick the vegetables. They are not the only company to be in this situation.

“Restricting free movement has had a devasting impact,” said Julian Marks, managing director.

“But not just on agriculture and horticulture – on pretty much every sector where people from abroad have been working in those sectors for years and now. They’re going home.”

Marks also believes that as farmers struggle supermarkets will begin to feel the hit too and will not be able to fill their shelves. He believes that supermarkets such as Tesco and Sainsbury’s will have to head to the EU and import goods or their shelves could be left empty.

Last year Prime Minister Boris Johnson tried to boost the number of UK workers helping harvest crops. The campaign was called Pick for Britain, but the effects were short lived. The campaign had hoped to fill fruit picking jobs with people who were out of work due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The agency Pro-Force has said that very few workers remained in the scheme by the end of the season.

“Common feedback from the British nationals placed by Pro-Force was that many of them wanted to ‘do their bit’ at time of national crisis but did not see this as a long term, viable option to provide the labour the industry needs in 2021 and beyond,” said Pro-Force’s James Mallick.

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Written by

Alex Glenn

Originally from the UK, Alex is based in Almeria and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com.