European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions
Together for decent work and fair pay from farm to fork

2nd Digitalisation workshop: Technology is not the solution, it is an enabler


This was a fundamental statement for the future production environment including the food industry, that was made at the Northern European Social Partners’ workshop hosted in Copenhagen .  A key outcome of the workshop was that it was clear that technology must be adapted to people, not the other way round. Proper implementation of the automated technologies would only be possible if workers were involved and applied their craftsman skills, experience and contributed to the optimization of the work organization (e.g. planning, teams and co-learning). It is important to make sure that work is organized in such a way that workers feel comfortable and take into account that the new technology fits into the existing production system. The present workforce and new talents will need to retrain and keep on acquiring new skills all through their career. The digital world will change the way we all work, and everybody need to embrace the change process. The challenge is whether we can upskill fast enough the present workforce and young people?

The first workshop was hosted in Budapest (October 25-26, 2018) for the South East European Social Partners and, the third workshop will be in Bologna, Italy (June 3-4, 2019) for the South European Social Partners. Findings from all three workshops and the work of the expert team will feed into a report and a set of tools. The outcomes of the project will be presented at a final conference hosted by the Social Partners in Brussels (October 2019).


EFFAT is the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions. As a European Trade Union Federation representing 120 national trade unions from 35 European countries, EFFAT defends the interests of more than 22 million workers towards the European Institutions, European employers’ associations and transnational companies. EFFAT is a member of the ETUC and the European regional organisation of the IUF.