By Joshua Manning • 08 April 2022 • 14:42
UK expected to see rise in food prices
The report by the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee (EFRA) said Covid and Brexit had a huge impact on the sector, leading to more than 500,000 vacancies, meaning that there is a huge lack of workers. MPs have asked for regulations on English language for skilled workers to be revised, as well as to expand on the visa scheme for seasonal workers.
The Chairman of the EFRA committee, Neil Parish stated: “The government’s attitude to the plight of food and farming workers was particularly disappointing.”
Chief Executive of the British Meat Processors Association,Nick Allen, stated: “As a result of the conflict in Ukraine, we find ourselves faced with a severe test of the UK’s food security, it’s clear that this approach has allowed structural weaknesses to develop, which have compromised Britain’s food resilience.”
The FDF’s director of policy and corporate affairs, Jayne Almond stated: “Compounding the inflationary pressures on UK food and drink manufacturers, many businesses continue to struggle with systemic labour shortages.”
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) claimed it has been researching how new technology could help the sector stating: “We fully acknowledge that the food and farming industry is facing labour challenges and we continue to work with the sector to mitigate them.
“We have given the industry greater certainty by enabling the seasonal workers scheme until the end of 2024, allowing overseas workers to come to the UK for up to six months to work in the horticulture sector.
“Our new points-based immigration system also expanded the skilled worker route to many more occupations, including butchers, who can now be recruited from anywhere in the world.”
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Originally from the UK, Joshua is based on the Costa Blanca 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 [email protected]
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