Ongoing follow-up at 55 Gasa Nord Grønt nurseries
Gasa Nord Grønt does annual follow-ups with the 55 horticulture companies that supply Gasa’s fruit and vegetables. In the process, the company shows their gardeners how to help protect human rights in basic, practical ways.
Follow up and promoting responsibility for human rights are integrated parts of the business processes at Gasa Nord Grønt. The company uses the annual visits and supplier checks to record and measure the progress of their 55 Danish nurseries against Gasa’s own checklist, which is based on GLOBAL G.A.P and GRASP, which, in turn, are in accord with international standards and relevant ILO conventions.
GLOBAL G.A.P. and GRASP focus on labour rights, not human rights, but can be an excellent starting point.
Gasa Nord Grønt’s assessments are based on regular meetings with an employee representative and 10 points in the GRASP system, such as documentation of wages and hours for seasonal workers. Areas at risk for negative impacts and areas with greatest potential for improvements are identified when a full overview of the nurseries has been made. Gasa Nord Grønt assists in the management of the most urgent challenges and the implementation of the improvements. The Danish nurseries employ approximately 1,800 seasonal workers each year during the three-month picking season.
Conditions for seasonal workers are a known potential risk in the horticultural industry. Among the results of Gasa Nord Grønt’s efforts, several gardeners have installed special mailboxes where employees, including foreign seasonal workers, can file complaints, express concerns and otherwise provide input. This has increased the focus on nipping problems in the bud. Nurseries have become more aware of cultural differences among seasonal workers, resulting in improvements in housing and contract terms.
Benefits for people
- Improved employee conditions: Seasonal workers have better housing and employment conditions
- Whistleblower scheme: Employees have been given the opportunity to speak out anonymously
- Proper payment: All Polish employees received fair pay for all hours worked
Gasa Nord Grønt about the business benefits from protecting human rights
“In-depth knowledge of the business’ value chain and proper conditions is essential when facing a crisis like COVID-19. We have had no outbreaks of infection among our seasonal workers or problems getting them to Denmark.”
Svend Jensen, Quality Manager, Gasa Nord Grønt