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Instructions for health-secure entry of seasonal workers in primary production are ready

Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
9.3.2021 15.35 | Published in English on 10.3.2021 at 16.38
Press release

Employer instructions for health-secure entry, quarantine and for the preparation of a health security plan for seasonal workers in primary production are now ready, as are health security instructions for seasonal workers in primary production. A seasonal worker coming to Finland must be quarantined for 14 days before work on farms can begin. The alternative to 14-day quarantine is two negative coronavirus test results. 

The first coronavirus test is taken at the border immediately after arrival in Finland, and the second test no earlier than 72 hours after the first test. If both tests are negative, the worker no longer needs to be quarantined after the second test result is ready, but can start working on the farm or in the forest.

The employer should inform workers in advance that they may not travel to Finland from the country of origin if they develop symptoms suggestive of coronavirus infection before starting the trip. If a worker develops those symptoms, the worker must postpone the trip and seek coronavirus testing in the country of origin.

“Ensuring the seasonal workforce without compromising health security is very important. By following the instructions now prepared, farms provide for the health security of both seasonal workers and the farm. In this way, we make sure that the work of the harvest season can be carried out normally even in exceptional circumstances,” says Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Jari Leppä.

Employers must compile a health security plan 

In accordance with the Government Resolution of 4 February 2021, an enterprise employing seasonal workers from abroad must compile a health security plan. The plan requires that the workplace has a health contact person, appointed by the employer, who workers can contact whenever they have questions or problems related to health security. 

In addition, the contact person must inform the municipal doctor responsible for infectious diseases at the workplace of the arrival of seasonal workers from abroad in the municipality, ensure that workers have face masks and hand sanitisers at their disposal, and must give workers instructions on hygiene and symptoms of coronavirus. The contact person also takes care of implementing the entry-level quarantine and monitoring of the quarantine.

It is good for seasonal workers to be accommodated throughout their work period in the smallest possible units, preferably in single rooms. In this way, even in the event of possible subsequent coronavirus infections, the emergence of large chains of infection can be prevented and the viability of the farm can be secured as well as possible.

Inquiries at the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
Kirsi Heinonen, Senior Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 295 162 059, firstname.lastname(at)mmm.fi
Satu Haapaniemi, Special Adviser to the Minister, tel. +358 50 400 5193, firstname.lastname(at)mmm.fi