London / UK. (fdf) According to the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) the proposals in the new MAC report fail to suggest solutions that would ensure the UK’s food and drink manufacturing industry would continue to have access to EU workers across the full range of skill levels. «MAC» means Migration Advisory Committee.
FDF chief executive Ian Wright CBE: «The report has some encouraging proposals. We welcome the suggestions relating to the Tier 2 visa system, including widening the range of jobs permitted within the tier, removing the resident labour market test, and abolishing a cap on the numbers of employees within this tier. Yet amendments to the Tier 2 visa system alone would still not offer our industry the flexibility needed to employ reactively.
«Any new system that constricts and constrains businesses’ ability to grow or to deal with changing consumer demand will do nothing to improve wage growth and may increase the cost of food and drink in the long-term. It is essential that Government prioritises migration in EU negotiations to ensure UK food and drink manufacturers have access to the employees they need at all skill levels».