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Furloughed UK workers will be encouraged to work as fruit pickers

Christian Fernsby |
Furloughed workers will be encouraged to take on a second job as fruit pickers during the summer harvest due to a lack of migrant workers, a Cabinet minister says.

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Topics: WORKER    FRUIT    UK   

Environment Secretary George Eustice said estimates suggest that probably only about a third of the migrant labour that would normally come to the UK is here, and was probably here before lockdown

Speaking at Downing Street's briefing on Sunday afternoon, Mr Eustice said: Although the international food chain is continuing to "work well", the Environment Secretary said he expects there to be a need to recruit staff in the UK to harvest crops at the start of summer.

"We're also acutely aware that we're about to start the British season in fresh produce, in soft fruits and salads," Mr Eustice told the briefing.

"We estimate that probably only about a third of the migrant labour that would normally come to the UK is here, and was probably here before lockdown.

"We are working with industry to identify an approach that will encourage those millions of furloughed workers in some cases to consider taking a second job, helping get the harvest in in June."


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