The bill to impose controls on the use of illegal labour in the fresh produce sector has passed through the House of Commons unopposed.
The Gangmaster (Licensing) Bill has now moved onto the House of Lords, much to the delight of supporters.
Jim Sheridan, MP for Renfrewshire West, who introduced the Private Member’s Bill said he was delighted and the news was welcomed by both the TGWU and the NFU.
Tony Woodley, general secretary of the T& G, said: “Licensing and registration of gangmasters would help protect some of the most vulnerable
workers in Britain.” And the NFU said licensing would assist with the cracking down on the exploitation of workers by unscrupulous gangmasters and encourage fairer trading.
However, Barney Holbeche, head of parliamentary affairs, said: “It is imperative any costs to businesses are shared within the food chain, rather than retailers pushing costs back up the chain to primary producers.”