has infected Since then, a large number of employees in the meat producer toennies with the Coronavirus, is one of the largest German battle enterprises in the criticism. Not only is the disregard of the distance rules, but also the precarious living conditions of many who come as guest workers to Germany, should have ensured the rapid spread of the Virus.

meat processing establishments as a foci of infection are, however, not a purely German Problem. “The reasons are the poor working and living conditions of thousands of meat workers in many countries in Europe are affected,” writes the European trade Union Federation for food, agriculture and tourism (EFFAT) in a recent report.

waves of Infection in many EU countries,

a large number of meat producers in EU countries such as Belgium, France, Ireland, Spain, Poland and the Netherlands have recorded since the beginning of April 2020 waves of Infection among their employees.

The Irish meat industry was affected after Germany in the EU most at risk of infection in slaughterhouses. In 19 Farms infected a total of 950 workers with the Virus, in some cases, a quarter of the workers fell ill. Nevertheless, none of the works in Ireland was closed.

in a Dutch slaughterhouse in Groenlo near the German border, about 20 percent of the workers infected, it was closed the work of the food producer Vion at the end of may. Has been tested only under pressure from the German authorities, since most of the workers living in Germany and over the border commutes.

In France were affected in mid-may, two of the slaughterhouses in the West of the country in which, until now, 180 employees positive to the Virus were tested. Only one of the plants in the Val de Loire, in the approximately ten percent of the workers affected, was closed by local authorities.

At the manufacturer’s Litera Meat in the Spanish municipality of Binéfar occurred around 200 Corona cases.

“In Germany, we have however, by far the largest outbreak in a facility,” says Kristjan Bragason General Secretary of the trade Union Federation EFFAT. “We have seen in the last few years, a veritable social dumping.” Germany is the largest meat producer in Europe.

wage dumping and poor living conditions

Many of the workers through subcontractors from Eastern Europe, Africa, and South America, to work for German and other European meat producers. The Union estimates EFFAT, that in Germany, around 80 percent of the meat production of mainly Eastern European migrant workers will be taken.

In a slaughterhouse with a subcontractor, so-called contracts for work and services for the slaughter and cutting of a certain number of animals to be agreed, for example. How many workers of a subcontractor for the job – the “work” – using what he paid for them, and how he organized the work, is not officially the responsibility of the slaughterhouse operator.

Since the guest workers are not employed by the companies directly, you are in the EU there is economic security and a long chord work without adequate break times. You will not be housed in cramped Collective shelters, which conform to the hygiene standards.

For a bed in a room with ten others, the factory-Verträgler up to 200 Euro. “All of the Social Distancing precautions that will be taken in the workplace, to the benefit of the workers nothing, if you are infected in the accommodation”, says a trade unionist Bragason. Some of them come from fear of dismissal even sick to work.

air-conditioning systems in the slaughterhouses facilitate the spread of the Virus in the air, and workers in the cold temperatures faster sick. European slaughterhouses will be centres for the spread of the Virus.

laws against exploitation by sub-contractors

you can Contain the European Situation, according to the trade Union, EFFAT, only if you gain control over the unacceptable living conditions of immigrant workers. In Denmark, where so far no infections in slaughterhouses have occurred, are only migrants, a quarter of the workers. Also in Spain, the phenomenon has decreased in the last few years.

President of The French Republic Emmanuel Macron announced after his election in 2017, the employment sub-contracted restrict. Work that go beyond a year should therefore be regulated with fixed contracts for French companies directly. So far it has done here in the legislation, however nothing.

In Germany, you want to adopt until January 2021 as quickly as possible, a law. The Federal Minister of labour, Hubertus Heil (SPD) announced to want to work contracts in the German meat industry to ban.

the meat industry in the world

affected “The only one comparable to those in Germany Situation in slaughterhouses outside the EU,” says EU trade unionists Bragason. “In the United States.” Here are the infection numbers were in the meat establishments of a similar increase as in Germany.

Several companies in the USA, had to suspend production temporarily, after a total of 5000 employees tested positive. Many works, however, opened already in may, when US President Donald Trump, the meat sector by regulation to engage in a critical sector, said. As a result, he wanted to do something about the discontent with meat shortages in the supermarkets.

The democratic presidential candidate, Joe Biden, likened in a Forum where relatives of the infected workers exchange, the conditions in the U.S. meat establishments recently with “war zones”. Here, too, there are often guest workers, especially from Latin America, working in poor working conditions for large US corporations.

The methods with which meat producers and wage dumping to operate and their workers in unsafe, poor conditions of life, production costs and keep prices low, are similar the world over. Media reports from the UK, Canada, Brazil and Australia show that infections with COVID-19, pile in the meat industry.

author: Clara Nack Tönnies, “Corona-false alarm” and 2. Shaft: The infection Loge Spinner in the Video FOCUS Online Tönnies, “Corona-false alarm”, and 2 says. Shaft: The infection Loge Spinner says in the Video

*The contribution to “European meat industry as a Corona of infection” is published by Deutsche Welle. Contact with the executives here.

Deutsche Welle