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Mowi Scotland committed to keeping food supply chain going. Mowi Scotland says it is doing everything they can to continue to get fresh, nutritious salmon to supermarkets and ultimately to consumers during the coronavirus lockdown.

Mowi Scotland’s The Scoop newsletter spoke to Joanna Peeling, Head of HR, to find out how Mowi employees have had to quickly adapt to this unprecedented situation.

“The first thing I’d like to say is a massive thank you to everybody at Mowi across all areas of the business. We have all had to make changes and sacrifices in our daily lives and it is a remarkable achievement that we are still getting a steady supply of salmon to retailers. We are supplying more than 500,000 meals a day and every one of our employees is contributing to that.”

Jo outlined some of the measures that have been taken:

“Both the UK and Scottish governments have reiterated the vital role that food producers play in the wellbeing of the nation; and have said we should, if possible, keep going. Obviously, for staff that can work from home, we have done everything we can to make this transition as seamless as possible, providing new equipment, hardware and software as quickly as we can source it. The supply chain for technology comes largely from overseas so, for example, new laptops or mobile phones are not easily available at the moment, but it is an ongoing process and we are prioritising according to the business-critical nature of each request.

“In addition, we are asking managers to be as supportive and flexible as they can in finding ways to allow those with caring responsibilities to carry on working.

“Of course, there are also those who, despite our efforts to reduce activity only to what is essential, simply cannot work from home. Those directly involved in producing feed for our salmon; our farmers who are responsible for the fish in their care; and our processing teams; along with those supporting them with vessels and logistics, meet the government’s definition of ‘key workers’. Every single one of these individuals contributes every day to the health and wellbeing of the people of Scotland and the UK.”

The crisis period so far has been very fast-moving and government guidance is constantly being updated, but in these key worker areas we are working exceptionally hard on meeting responsibilities to keep people safe. For example, Mowi are:

  • Repeatedly and consistently communicating to all workers through briefings, posters and letters, that they must follow health protection advice on when and for how long they should isolate either themselves or as part of their household. No worker in Mowi should or will be put under pressure to breach that advice.
  • Carrying out risk assessments across all areas of the business to identify and set up special health and safety arrangements; and provide appropriate Personal Protective Equipment according to the nature of work being undertaken.
  • As well as asking everyone to be responsible in practising self-isolation, maintaining good cough and hand hygiene and social distancing; just a few of the additional health and safety arrangements we’ve put in place include:
  • Adjustments to shift start and finish times, so that there is a clear break between one group of people leaving and the next arriving
  • Break adjustments to enable social distancing to be practised in communal areas (e.g. kitchens and canteens)
  • New additional hand sanitisers installed to enhance existing handwashing facilities
  • Stopping all non-essential business travel and all non-essential visits to our sites
  • Working to update all our workers regularly with clear and comprehensive information on work-related risks in their area. Regular team briefings are taking place, with update information and health posters on display across all sites.
  • Supporting individual working arrangements for keyworkers who have no access to childcare
  • Offering support for those who usually ‘car share’ on their commute. We know how fortunate we are to work with such committed and dedicated people, and it is at times like this where we need to look out for one another.

Mowi Scotland say it will be a considerable time yet before things get back to ‘normal’, but in the meantime they will continue to take their responsibilities, both as an employer and as a supplier of food, extremely seriously.