Tory MP warns Boris Johnson ‘crops are rotting in the fields’ due to labour shortage

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Boris Johnson has rejected a petition to introduce emergency work visas after a Conservative lawmaker warned of a “crop rot” in his constituency due to a labor shortage.

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Roger Gale, representing Thanet, said growers in his local area have had to throw away huge amounts of produce because there aren’t enough people to pick it up or take it to market.

Businesses across the country have been hit hard by labor shortages since Britain left the European Union’s single market and ended free movement at the start of the year.


Many sectors that were previously employed by EU migrant workers are struggling to recruit enough staff, with repercussions along the supply chain.

Addressing the Prime Minister, Mr. Gail said: “We are at harvest time, and Mr. Speaker, not all are safely assembled. In three weeks in my constituency Thanet Earth, the largest tomato-growing glass house in the country With no pickers and no drivers, one of the companies had to trash produce worth £320,000.

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“The crops are rotting in the fields and on our trees due to lack of labor force. Mr. Speaker, my right honorable friend, would like to introduce a COVID recovery visa immediately, so that this year’s crop is not wasted?”

Mr Johnson dismissed the petition and said the existing system was already sufficient to deal with the issue. He claimed the problem was “long-running” – in an apparent bid to end his recent end to the blame-free movement.

“Exactly what he says about the importance of buying British food British,” said the prime minister, wearing a wheat sheaf badge in the chest pocket of his suit to mark “British Farming Day”. .


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