by Thorsten Koch
The federal government has decided regarding the meat industry that there will no longer be sub-contracts and nor temporary employment. The root of the problem lies in the “sub-, sub-subcontracting” of the slaughterhouses, said Minister of Labor Hubertus Heil (SPD), referring to risks in the course of the Corona pandemic, due to the conditions for the workforce, who, incidentally, often stem from Bulgaria and Romania . The decision should apply from 2021. Working conditions and the hygiene standards in collective accommodation had previously been criticized by some. Trade unions praised Heil’s initiative.
Agriculture Minister Julia Klöckner (CDU) justified that there are sometimes unsustainable conditions in slaughterhouses. Responsibility for this could not be outsourced. In contrast, criticism came from umbrella organizations of the economy. The Employers’ Associations warned of “arbitrary discrimination” and defended the model of work contracts. An association of the poultry industry emphasized that it was unconstitutional to ban labor contracts for the meat industry alone. The decisions are “wrong and disproportionate”. They endangered jobs.
Agricultural politician Stegemann (CDU) warned of a shortage of skilled workers in meat processing. Some opposition politicians called for more restrictions in the entire agricultural industry, in the construction industry and regarding cleaning of buildings.