500 seasonal workers arrived in two days


More than green corridors, announced by Minister Bellanova, blue corridors have opened, like the sky. The new ones migrants they arrive in Italy in fact on charter or private jets and they are the same Italian entrepreneurs who pick them up in Africa or other European countries. These are the so-called seasonal, specialized labor in agriculture, and not of desperate men and women fleeing wars and misery.

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On the other hand, agriculture has its own time and the historians of the southern laborers, coordinated by the USB union, who yesterday organized a strike of the collection of fruit and vegetables, calling for the extension of the regularization of all the invisibles that the land has been working for years, and not just those included in the relaunch decree. But arms on the ground are never enough.

So after the private jet sent to Romania by Martin Foradori Hofstätter, winemaker at the helm of the famous winery in South Tyrol, to bring 12 pruning tubes, it was the turn of entrepreneurs from Abruzzo, Veneto and Lombardy. Yesterday the first Alba Star charter flight, organized by Confagricoltura Abruzzo, landed in Pescara with the arrival of 124 agricultural workers from Morocco. The arrival was like real stars with applause and smiles. Another flight will arrive today, with as many workers, and a third is scheduled for the next few days, always departing from Casablanca: destination 40 companies on the Fucino plain and one in Vicenza. Dozens of other workers from Morocco are also arriving in Milan Malpensa tomorrow, this time destined for the northern Italian countryside. In addition, about a hundred Indian workers specialized in agriculture have arrived in Rome, destined for the countryside of the Po Valley. This is the result – never more successful than ever – of the diplomatic work of Confagricoltura, in particular with the Embassies in Morocco and India, which also involved the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the ICE. As early as March, the government had been asked to bring in non-EU workers who have had an employment contract with Italian companies for years, in order to meet the harvesting needs in the fields. But the Coronavirus emergency had crystallized everything.

Not everywhere though. It is in fact since April that charter flights bring seasonal agricultural specialists from Romania to Germany and Great Britain, thanks to agreements made with their respective governments. “In two months of intense institutional relations work, – underlines the president of Confagricoltura Massimiliano Giansanti – with the indispensable collaboration of our companies, we too have achieved these results that allow us to face, in part, the emergency workforce”. Romano Magrini, Coldiretti’s job manager, explains: “There are 220,000 farms that hire labor in Italy. There are 1 million and 200 thousand agricultural workers: of these, 1 million and 50 thousand are temporary workers, i.e. seasonal workers, while the rest are permanent workers. Out of the total agricultural workers, about 370 thousand come from other countries ».

Now the seasonal workers will have to face a period of quarantine before they can start working, even if the entrepreneurs will try to carry out this period of isolation in an active way, since the work takes place in the open air and respecting the distances foreseen by government directives . One more problem, however, will be to ensure housing where health safety standards are respected. “The entrepreneurs paid the flight 425 euros per laborer, in order to have skilled labor – explains Stefano Fabrizi, president of Confagricoltura Abruzzo – These are workers who have often collaborated with these entrepreneurs for years, who know how to use a combine and have a license to the treatments, which can withstand the tiredness of bending the back all day “because the earth is low” and who knows how to prune and harvest the products of the earth “. Like the Romanian pruners for the precious Traminer from South Tyrol. «For ten years they have always been the same on the Tarmeno estate – Foradori Hofstätter said – without them the future of my vineyards would have been marked. Italians? I tried with the local workforce but those who were hired gave up almost immediately: a job too hard, and above all impossible without the right skills ».

Yet there was a job request from the Italians. Indeed, there were 24,000 Italians who, through various sites dedicated to agricultural work – the Confagricoltura site is called “Agrijob”, the Coldiretti site is called “Jobincountry” – made themselves available from North to South. Many are the so-called economic victims of the coronavirus: ex bartenders, ex shop assistants, bricklayers, tour guides, boys and girls who perhaps are not quite familiar with the land but who, in order not to stay at home without doing anything and without money, have started game This is what emerges, for example, from the members of the web matching portal iolavoro.org/agriculture, the initiative of the Piedmont Region to support companies in the agricultural sector in the recruitment of personnel. Less than a month after the launch of the initiative, 1,312 people, most under 39, have applied to work in the fields. But how much does an agricultural worker earn? On the Jobbydoo website, you can get an idea: from around 800 euros for part-time jobs to 1,800 for specialized ones and with responsible work. To say, the famous Romanian pruners earn 15-18 euros per hour.
Last updated: 14:44


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