At Finnish Greenhouses Many Workers Speak Thai

Finnish greenhouses are increasingly relying on foreign labour.  Employers say that they cannot find Finns who want to do this hot, strenuous work.
Within the past few years, the proportion of foreigners working at greenhouses has doubled.
Previously foreigners working in greenhouses came mainly from Poland, Estonia and Russia. Now they are more often recruited from Asia.
At the Katain vihannes vegetable farm in Laihia, western Finland, owner Stig Hjortman says:
“At the moment we have 11 people from Thailand and one from Ecuador. I’m the only European working here”.
The company’s CEO, Banjonk Runghuphai, says, “When you work here, the pay is better. A Thai person can earn as much working here for a month as in a year back home.”
The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry is now studying the number of foreigners in the field, currently estimated at around 3,000. The industry association estimates that one in five employees is a foreigner.


 

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