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Agriculture: Seasonal Workers

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN HL3098, tabled on 8 November 2016

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the impact that leaving the EU will have on farming; and whether they plan to implement a new seasonal agricultural workers scheme in order to attract non-EU workers onto farms to pick fruit and vegetable crops.

Answered on

22 November 2016

Supporting our farmers and protecting the environment will form an important part of our exit from the EU. We are now focused on making sure that all our policies are delivering for the UK and to grow our world-leading food and farming industry. I am looking forward to working with industry and the public to develop new proposals that support our agricultural and horticultural industries as we leave the EU.

With regard to seasonal labour, until we leave the EU, there are no changes to labour movements. Defra is very aware that migrant workers from other EU countries will be one of the complex issues that will have to be resolved as part of our exit negotiations and future relationship with the EU. We are currently working with colleagues across government to explore options.