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Biotropic offices report on Corona

by Leo Frühschütz (comments: 0)

Market stall in Costa Rica
Market stall in Costa Rica: tourists and foreign workers are missing as customers due to border closure © Jorge A. Russell / shutterstock

Biotropic, the fruit and vegetable importer asked employees in its branches from France to Costa Rica to the Ivory Coast, to report on Corona and the situation for them locally.

An important topic in the reports is cultivation and supply availability. For example, Doris Thewes writes about the producers in Italy: "businesses are working with emergency staff, both in the fields and in the warehouses and often do not know until the day itself how many workers they will have. A lot of overtime is being paid and "all are making an extraordinary effort!"

Volker Schmidt writes from Costa Rica: "There is a shortage of workers in the fields and in packing as people are staying at home. Production is down and clearly, there is also a shortage of workers to cultivate new land." One reason he mentions is the closed borders and that migrant labourers from Nicaragua or Venezuela can no longer enter the country. "There is a problem getting customs papers, so they are piling up.” Also as no tourists are coming to the country, the largest source of foreign exchange is missing. "Many thousands in tourism have now lost their jobs in the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica."


From Spain: "There is production, however with delay. Many goods go over France, where there are delays due to the curfew from 8 pm. "Despite current conditions, it's working unexpectedly well." Production is also slower as the workers on the belts, the packers and the sorters are no longer allowed to stand so close together.

Kuemkwong Siemefo reports from the Ivory Coast in West Africa: "Our personnel are working from home however, it’s hardly possible to work effectively work from home, above all due to the lack of internet." Export regulations have been significantly tightened, so "we will see in the next few days how this affects our exports."

Deliveries are mostly reaching the Netherlands. "The biggest problem with the flow of goods is the lack of people to pack the goods, in Peru, Costa Rica, Argentina and the Ivory Coast, as they have only half the people available," writes Dick Troost.

The reports all date back to March and an update would certainly be worth reading.



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