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Are Agri-Food Workers Only Exploited in Southern Europe?

Case Studies on Migrant Labor in Germany, Netherlands, and Sweden

In recent years, several studies have reported on the exploitation endured by migrant workers in Southern European Union member states—especially in sectors such as agriculture and food production. However, there has been much less focus on the North. New research now shows that agri-food workers in Northern Europe also face poor and even abusive conditions.

In this light, Are Agri-Food Workers Only Exploited in Southern Europe? focuses on production in Germany, Netherlands, and Sweden. These three EU member states have stronger social protections than Italy, Spain or Greece—yet the dynamics driving wage compression and the violation of workers’ rights are like those in Southern Europe.

This publication provides recommendations on how the EU and national governments can act to make Europe’s agri-food system more sustainable, benefiting farmers, consumers, workers, and the environment.

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