06 April 2021
Growers urged to use free covid tests for workers
UK GROWERS employing seasonal agricultural workers are being urged to register for free workplace testing of Covid-19.
The Government has introduced a new testing regime whereby international arrivals who are in the country for longer than two days are required to take a test before the end of the second day, with a further test every three days. Those who receive a positive test result will be required to take a further PCR test for variant surveillance. Seasonal agricultural workers will be able to access these tests through several routes, including home tests and community testing sites.
Employers of seasonal agricultural workers who register for workplace testing can now access free tests to help meet this requirement. It means the growers themselves won't have to take on the greater costs of regular PCR testing, which could save them around £10m.
Farming Minister Victoria Prentis said: “I am immensely grateful for the resilience our growers have shown throughout the last year, meeting the challenges of the pandemic and going above and beyond to help keep the nation fed. Now, as we look towards resuming a more normal way of life, we must stay vigilant and do what we can to ensure we continue to operate as safely as possible. Regular testing protects businesses, helps keep workers safe and is vital to our continuing recovery. I urge our farmers and growers to work with us to protect their workforces, their businesses and our food supply.”