The Italian farm association Coldiretti has started vaccinating migrant farm workers against COVID-19 in Italy's southern city of Foggia.
The Italian farm association Coldiretti announced Sunday (June 13) that it had started a campaign in the southern city of Foggia speeding up vaccination against COVID-19 and focusing on those living in nearby rural areas and working in fields. The farms themselves had made this request.
"Among them are non-EU nationals, who account for almost a third of the manpower necessary in Foggia and who supply over one million workdays per year," noted the head of the Puglia regional branch of the association Savino Muraglia on Sunday morning at the vaccination hub in Foggia set up at the association's headquarters.
Focus on 'the invisibles'
The association noted that about 30 farms in the area were taking part in the campaign, for a total of almost 300 doses of anti-COVID vaccines made available. About 220 non-EU nationals will be getting the first dose.
On Sunday, a community that lives in the so-called "ghetto" Casa Sankara of San Severo in Foggia was to be vaccinated, Muraglia noted.
"This is to speed up the vaccination campaign but also and above all to include that part of the population that can be considered invisible especially when faced with this public health emergency."
A special route has been set up for reception and triage with two vaccination posts and an observation area, with a reservation procedure that -- Coldiretti said -- provides for the identifying of lists collected by farms in the Foggia province that have made a request for Pfizer vaccine administration.
Over quarter of Made in Italy food 'from foreign workers'
In a press release, Coldiretti said that "(A)t the national level, over one quarter of 'Made in Italy' food products are from foreign workers' hands, with 368,000 workers from 155 countries that have found regular employment in agriculture, providing 29% of the total number of workdays necessary in the sector."
"The vast majority of them have for years been working to ensure professionalism and expertise in Italian farms and every year cross the border to return to their countries," the statement said.