Fruit and vegetable producers and their cooperatives are aware of the importance of the health, safety and wellbeing of their employees.
Ergonomic support when planting and harvesting fruit and vegetables is important, and nine out of ten producers have introduced specific measures to this end. The number of work incidents at VBT cooperatives is declining, and absenteeism rates are lower than industry average.
The cooperatives offer their employees the opportunity to develop a sustainable career with room for competency development and challenges. They provide education and training for their employees and producers. The fact that employees are opting for longer careers is proof that the VBT cooperatives are creating a stable working environment.
During harvesting months, seasonal workers are essential. This form of employment offers low-threshold employment to motivated people from different disadvantaged groups. For example, youth can gain experience on horticultural farms through holiday jobs. And seasonal labourers that work well can come back season after season and, in some cases, become permanent employees.
From a cooperative mindset, the fruit and vegetable sector also cooperates with the social economy. In association with social employment initiatives, the VBT cooperatives put people with limitations, or people that are being trained for the normal employment circuit, to work. There are a number of projects that link social employment to the processing of goods.