BMPA renews warning about meat supply labour shortage
Nick Allen, chief executive of the British Meat Processors Association (BMPA), has again called for Government action over the staff shortage that is threatening meat production.
Allen is concerned some companies could be forced to shut down production lines altogether, with some firms already having to simplify their range of products due to the lack of key skills now available.
Profitable cuts that require the work of skilled butchers, such as French-trimmed lamb chops with the fat removed, could be impacted first.
Allen told the BBC that post-Brexit changes had made the industry’s recruitment issues worse, adding: “We’ve been calling on the Government for months to add butchers to the Shortage Occupation List, which would allow the industry to temporarily fill these growing vacancies with overseas workers until the current crisis has passed.”
He also pointed out the issues caused by Covid-19 requirements, calling for greater clarity on isolation periods when workers are ‘pinged’ by the app and for continued access to free testing kits for businesses beyond the current end date of 19th July.