BERRY POOR PICKINGS FRO FARM WORKERS

PUBLISHED: 10:28 28 July 2006 | UPDATED: 10:34 06 May 2010

WORKERS at a Herefordshire strawberry farm are being treated like modern day slaves , a union is warning. Bosses at two of Britain s biggest supermarkets are being urged to intervene to stop the alleged abuse of workers at SandA Produce in Marden, near H

WORKERS at a Herefordshire strawberry farm are being treated like 'modern day slaves', a union is warning.

Bosses at two of Britain's biggest supermarkets are being urged to intervene to stop the alleged abuse of workers at SandA Produce in Marden, near Hereford.

The Transport and General Workers' Union said it had gathered evidence from strawberry pickers at the site, which produces a third of the strawberries sold in the UK.

The TGWU said alleged abuses included employees working 14 hours a day with less than 30 minutes break; being denied urgent medical care or being told they will be charged a fee for it; frequent breaches of contracts, with the normal working week set at six or seven days compared to the five days signed for.

Jack Dromey, Deputy General Secretary of the TGWU, said: "Workers are being treated like modern day slaves, exploited for profit at the very bottom of the food supply chain.

"The supermarkets cannot wash their hands of responsibility to end the scandal of modern day slavery producing one third of the strawberries sold in the UK."

There was no one available at SandA Produce to comment on the allegations.


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