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Experiences of forced labour in the UK food industry

Experiences of forced labour in the UK food industry

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Original languageEnglish
Place of publicationYork
PublisherJoseph Rowntree Foundation
Publication date2012
Number of pages91
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-85935-921-1, 978-1-85935-903-7
StatePublished

Abstract

This report looks at evidence of exploitation and forced labour in sectors within the UK food industry.
It draws upon in-depth testimonies from 62 migrant workers mainly originating from the EU and China.
Three sub-sectors of the food industry are represented in the study:
agriculture, food processing and minority ethnic catering. The research is based
in five areas of the UK: south Lincolnshire and the Wash area, east-central
Scotland (encompassing Dundee, Angus, Fife, and Perth and Kinross), Bristol
and the south-west of England, London and Liverpool.
The UK government recently reaffirmed its commitment to eradicating
modern-day slavery by creating the criminal offence of ‘forced labour’.
Focusing on sub-sectors of the economy known to be home to significant
levels of exploitation, the report seeks to identify forced labour in four ways. It:
• lists the key forced labour indicators affecting the 62 migrants interviewed;
• highlights the labour-market contexts closely associated with forced labour;
• discusses the practices employers engage in that, if severe enough or
numerous enough, lead to forced labour situations;
• identifies the negative outcomes that result from workers experiencing
forced labour.

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