Sunday, March 25, 2018

Fruit and vegetable production should get post Brexit boost

The Landworkers' Alliance has issued a report arguing that fruit and vegetable production should be boosted after Brexit: New deal for horticulture

It argues that directing more of the budget towards fruit and vegetables will deliver much of what Mr Gove wants in terms of health and sustainability.

However, it is already difficult to secure labour to pick such crops. Google searches by Romanian, Bulgarian and Polish citizens looking for agricultural jobs in the UK dropped by 34 per cent in the past year, according to a study by GK Strategy and OneFourZero.

The fall in interest from overseas has not been matched by an increase in searches from UK workers for UK farm jobs. Bulgaria saw the largest drop, with 2,000 fewer searches for UK jobs in January 2017 compared with the same time the year before.

The two companies said Google search data was a good early indicator of changing behaviour patterns because people increasingly looked online for job vacancies.

The UK agricultural sector already has a 29 per cent shortfall in seasonal workers. The Government has so far failed to introduce any kind of special scheme.

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