By Constantin Radut
Germany systematically exploits workers from Eastern Europe to harvest asparagus. According to German agricultural organizations, the “white gold” crop needs about 40,000 workers per season. This year, because of the coronavirus, the specialized farms desperately sought help or volunteering from within the country. But without much success. From what I read in online publications, the Germans are not good at picking asparagus. Moreover, says a farmer, “the local aid is not efficient, they have no skills, and the Germans hurt their backs if they are bent several hours a day.”
So this is the problem: the Germans are not keen on agriculture and, above them, the backbone also hurts.
So the German Farmers Association lobbied with the authorities and brought, with great efforts, workers from Romania, Poland and several other countries from the East.
The Romanian ambassador to Berlin, Emil Hurezeanu, had a difficult mission, but he accomplished it with great courage. Emil Hurezeanu is a convinced philogerman. He helped Germany. Because Geramnai helped him become what he is today, especially when he was a journalist on the Europa Europa radio station based in Munich.
The Romania-Germania air bridge came into operation before the Catholic Easter. On Thursday and the Friday before Easter, dozens of Eurowings planes brought the “light from the East” for the German asparagus: over 2000 Romanian workers arrived on German farms.
Some of them fled even from the quarantined areas in Romania, for example, Suceava, one of the largest outbreaks of the disease in Romania. They left Romania to die in Germany, on the battlefield of asparagus. This is the sad story of the Bahan family. The head of the family, Nicolae died the day after he stepped on German soil. Nicolae Bahan was only 54 years old, he was from Solca (Suceava county). He was away with his wife and worked at a farm about 40 km from Freiburg. The man was found dead on Saturday.
“I was told on Tuesday that I would know the causes of death … Now I was told to stay in the room and not go to work. I spoke to a company and she said he would handle his repatriation because we want to bury him at home. And the company where I worked with my husband promised to help us with the repatriation, “confessed Silvia Bahan, according to monitorulsv.ro newspaper. The woman said her husband never had any medical problems.
It is the first Romanian that in 2020 fell on the battlefield of asparagus.
How many will follow? Will we find out the truth?
The life goes on. Business does not count on the dead. A German farmer recounts: “In general, harvesting is slower than usual, but consumers are very interested in popular vegetables. This makes the asparagus expensive: last week, German asparagus cost an average of 11 euros per kilo, said Michael Koch of the Agrarmarkt-Informationgesellschaft (AMI) in Bonn. That is, 80 cents more than in the same period last year. ”
This is why Romanians and Poles are good: they make great profits for the Germans. On average, a worker from Eastern Europe should collect about 100 boxes of ash per day, about 300 kg / day. For his day job, the foreign worker earns about 5-6 euros / day. With one day’s work, the German employer ensures the full wage for a month for a foreign worker. The rest goes into his pocket and into the graves of Romanians or Poles.
Isn’t this a German business? It is, of course. Why does the German government have a trade surplus? Because it uses cheap foreign labor and sells expensive products, with a 90% profit margin.
The local newspaper Monitorul de Suceava writes: “A man who went for asparagus harvesting in Germany told about the totally improper working conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the lack of interest of the local farmers to provide them with means. minimum protection.
He left Romania on April 10, with a plane from Iasi, and was promised at the airport that everything would be fine, except that things were completely different on the spot.
“On arrival, we received a mask for each person, but the work is in the open field, there is wind, dust and dirt. We asked to supplement the number of masks. Do you know what they told us? But what, in Romania you had masks? ”, Said the sucevean. He described living and working conditions as “inhuman”.
Is that so, Mr. Ambassador Emil Hurezeanu? Have you been wearing a mask on the asparagus fields where the Romanians work? It would be good to go and confirm or not the above. Also tell us where Romanians sleep, what Romanians eat, who provides medical care, daily hygiene materials etc.
By Constantin Radut