Under the heading ‘food safety’, I decided to mention the qualitatively different issues associated with the safety of all the people involved along the food supply chain.
It’s not EHOs and analytical chemists involved in such matters, as outlined in the previous blogpost. Here the issues are about exploitation, illegal employment conditions, modern-day slavery.
Both this Brexit and Covid have highlighted many issues associated with poor working conditions, low pay and the trafficking of people, a situation that existed before either happened.
Given all of this, are we in crisis? No doubt it’s a crisis for so many exploited people . . .
And the remedy? Strict enforcement of the law.
And that means higher, possibly much higher food prices, about which more in a later blogpost.
For more information, read:
- Seasonal workers and modern slavery. FarmWell.
- Industry profiles: Food processing and production. Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority, 2020.
see also their 208 report: The nature and scale of labour exploitation across all sectors in the United Kingdom.
- Modern day slavery research from the Independent Slavery Commissioner and the University of Nottingham’s Right Lab, 2018 — which found “poor reporting and low levels of action by the UK agricultural sector on modern slavery“
Previous blogposts in this series about my Lunar Society presentation Food security: Is the UK in crisis?
- Part 4: Safety, assurance and integrity — inspection, sampling & testing capacity and capability
- Part 3: Economic access to food
- Part 2: Food security: How can we assess if the UK is already in crisis?
- Part 1: Pears grown in Argentina, packed in Thailand
This is the fifth blogpost in the Lunar Society series, others all listed in this link: Food security: Is the UK already in crisis?