The CLA is calling on the public to help farms feed the nation and save this year’s harvest.
As a result of travel restrictions and illness, the agricultural sector could face a shortage of up to 80,000 seasonal labour workers.
Time is critical as the picking of soft fruit is due to begin in April, vegetable growers are already beginning to crop and lambing season has reached its peak.
The response from the public has been phenomenal with thousands of people wanting to help farms in need and shows the nation’s great community spirit.
Work on a farm near you
If you are seeking employees to work on your farm, register on the Government’s new Pick for Britain website here - https://pickforbritain.org.uk/are-you-an-employer/
The CLA suggests the following labour recruitment and employment agencies to register your interest - click on the links below:
ALP also has a tool to 'swap' spare workers
Read more about this story
We've been delighted by the response we've had to our calls for recruits to help farmers Feed the Nation. Take a look at some of the news coverage we've been featured in so far.
- With No EU Workers Coming, The U.K. Agriculture Sector Is In Trouble (Forbes)
"According to the CLA, the agriculture sector usually uses around 60,000 seasonal labourers per year to complete the harvest, and they expect only around 25% of that amount this year."
- Shortage of workers means crops in danger of rotting in ground during coronavirus outbreak (Daily Telegraph - login required)
"British crops are at risk of rotting in the ground because of a "disastrous" shortage of seasonal workers caused by the coronavirus pandemic.""
- Government launches WWII Land Army-style Pick for Britain campaign to stop crops rotting in fields amid shortage of seasonal migrant workers - as farmers warn 'we won't get critical food on the shelves' (Mail Online)
"CLA President Mark Bridgeman warned of inflation as crops could 'rot in fields'"
- Farmers warn over harvests amid shortage of workers (Financial Times - login required)
"Echoing second world war rhetoric, the UK’s Country Land & Business Association is calling for a “land army” of new farmworkers. Germany has appealed to the unemployed to work on farms, while the French agriculture minister Didier Guillaume issued a rallying cry to what he called France’s “shadow army” of workless."
- Farmers call for 'land army' to sustain UK food production during coronavirus crisis (The Guardian)
"Farming leaders have raised concerns about a lack of available labour because of the coronavirus, with one calling for a “land army” to be recruited from people put out of work by the crisis."
- Coronavirus measures could cause global food shortage, UN warns (The Guardian)
The Country Land and Business Association (CLA), representing more than 30,000 UK landowners and rural firms, made a similar call last week, for the government to make it easier for people thrown out of work by the lockdown to find seasonal work on farms