Berry farmers in northern Finland are looking forward to welcoming more than the usual number of fruit harvesters this summer. With a plentiful crop expected this year, more hands will be needed to get the produce to market.
Businesses in Kainuu such as Kiantama, Ber-Ex and Kainuu Products have invited nearly 1,100 berry pickers to Finland to harvest the fruit in Kainuu, eastern Lapland and north east Finland.
The majority of pickers invited will come from Thailand, although this year some Ukrainians will also join the berry picking gangs. Due to the late maturity of the crop, some of the workers will arrive just one week before the start of the blueberry harvest.
Flights from Thailand to Finland have already been reserved and the first workers will arrive in a couple of weeks in time for the start of the picking season.
“The workers won’t have to pay for food or accommodation,” said Jari Valtanen of Kainuu Products. Most of its workers will come from Ukraine, the rest from Thailand. Its parent company Riitan-Herkku has recruited 700 workers for the harvest this year, compared to 610 last year. Some have also been recruited from nearby Sweden.
The Sami company Kiantama Ltd and the Sotkamo-based Ber-ex Ltd. have also enlisted the help of berry pickers from Thailand.
Latest in: News
Spanish nurses leaving Vaasa
Five of eight Spanish nurses recruited to work in Vaasa's city hospital have decided to quit the jobs they took up in October and leave the country. The reasons they cite include the high cost of living, the cold climate, and the difficulty of the Finnish language.
Toxic spill in Helsinki's Mätäjoki River
A chemical discharge into Helsinki's Mätäjoki River has killed fish and possibly wiped out years of efforts to revive spawning grounds for endangered species.
Sikh bus driver fights for right to wear turban
Managing diversity in Finnish workplaces is raising new issues for employers, unions and workers themselves. One Sikh bus driver in Vantaa is currently fighting to set a precedent allowing him to wear a turban.
Veolia drivers to return to work
Bus drivers working for the Veolia company will return to work on Tuesday, bringing their week-long work stoppage to an end.
Finnish traffic cops set to miss out on Gumball speeding fine jackpot
Several contestants in the Gumball rally were stopped for speeding on Monday, on the Turku-Helsinki leg of their unorthodox race. Police say that despite their concerns, the drivers are likely to escape Finland’s hefty income-based fines.
Yle News building its freelance database
Yle News is building up a database of freelance journalists for occasional work in radio, television and online news production.
Jolla to sell new phone this year
A mobile firm founded by former Nokia employees is set to put a new smartphone on sale by the end of the year. The company, Jolla, was set up to continue working on an open source Linux-based smartphone when Nokia announced it was switching to the Windows Phone operating system.
Decline in church membership will cost jobs
In order to cope with decreasing membership, the Evangelical Lutheran Church will be forced to reduce its staff significantly in coming years. Many congregations are facing dire financial circumstances due to the reduction in the tax revenue that flows as a result of membership.
Finns Party women: Party is neither racist nor chauvinist
Both male and female representatives of the Finns Party claim that both their party and its leader are in favour of gender equality.
Vantaa bus drivers’ strike continues
Bus engines at the Veolia depot in Vantaa have been quiet for nearly one week, as bus drivers continue their work stoppage on Monday.