Too posh to pick

29 June 2017 | by Rose Prince

The Ethical Kitchen


Among the mass of information spelled out on packs of fruit or vegetables, rarely will you find any details as to who picked or packed the contents. British-grown produce will often carry a Union Jack stamp, but the workforce who plucked berries, cherries, salad and greens for our tables almost always is made up of seasonal migrants who spend their summers and autumn working for farmers in Britain.

Such workers, many of whom are from Poland, Romania and Bulgaria, have been essential for decades – ever since local workers began to shun such work in the 1950s. Today, it is estimated that the UK requires 80,000 pickers every year to get through the growing season.

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