The British Poultry Council has called on the government to expand the seasonal worker scheme to include the Christmas turkey sector. Around nine million British turkeys are reared for Christmas every year to some of the highest standards in the world.
“We are calling on the Government to extend the seasonal worker pilot scheme currently aimed at the horticulture sector to the poultry meat industry,” said a BPC spokesperson. “This will ensure that British turkeys remain afforadble and available for all every Christmas. Government must ensure that British poultry meat, and the quality it represents, stays affordable and available for all.”
The government’s Seasonal Workers scheme was introduced in February 020, enabling the recruitment of a limited number of temporary migrants for specific roles in the horticultural sector.
The government’s immigration bill will introduce a points-based system for those wanting to work and live in the UK which is likely to exclude most of those who currently come from abroad to work in the poultry sector.