Last Updated on January 24, 2019
A food industry group has called on the Canadian government to introduce a new scheme to make it easier to hire foreign workers who can qualify for permanent residency and ultimately citizenship. The group has proposed a plan on how the government can deal with a labor shortage that it says is crippling the industry.
The industry backs the government in its attempts to get Canadian citizens to fill vacancies in food processing plants in rural areas, but the reality of situation is that Canadians just don’t want the jobs, even if they live in areas with high unemployment rates.
And starting July 1, Canada is to limit the number of new foreign workers that companies can hire to 20 per cent of their workforce. The move will further impact the food-processing sector which is already struggling to fill vacancies. The cap will be reduced further to just 10 per cent next year.
The government is aware of the labor shortage, but has not given any indication that it is willing to alter its plans. The Canadian Meat Council said the cuts will jeopardize the industry at a time when government is claiming to work towards bolstering the agricultural sector.
Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz says the government is working to solve the problem, but hasn’t given any further details of what that could involve.
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