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Swedish Berries Coursework
Swedish berries are red coloured, sometimes blue and green, and berry-shaped candy manufactured by Maynards Company (Lintner, 2009). Swedish berries is a trademark used by Vanderlei Candy, a branch of Cadbury Canada. The major constituents of Swedish berries are corn starch, sugar, citric acid, glucose syrup, carnauba wax, concentrated pear juice, and colour (The Economist, 2012). The berries have a similar taste to a Swedish fish (a product of Maynard). Swedish berries grow naturally in the forests. They are rich in antioxidants and vitamins. Many people consider berries to be natural health pills. Some of the benefits associated with the berries include improving night vision, used as a traditional medicine for diarrhoea, has antibacterial properties, has anti-inflammatory properties, abundant in vitamin B and have anti-oxidant properties.
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The increased consumption of candy products in most countries owes their origin to Swedish berries. Most of the candy companies report having used Swedish berries, at some point, in their production. Some of the companies have gone ahead to use Swedish berries as a trademark for their products. It has resulted in the increased popularity of this natural resource. Swedish berries have become a darling to many people yet most of them know very little about how it is nurtured. It has acted as a stimulus for me to carry out this project. Coupled with the knowledge gained in class, I thought it was wise to research Swedish berries.
- To find out the main places where the Swedish berries are planted.
- To find out the types of berries commonly found in Sweden.
- To find out who is the main source of human labour (pickers).
- To find out the challenges the berry pickers face while in the line of duty.
- To find out whether Swedish berries grow naturally or are planted.
Forests and meadows in Sweden are rich in delicious berries. Swedes invade the forests in summer to pick the berries. In the past, the berries were the main source of vitamins and mineral salts during winter sessions. As a result, people used to invade the forests at such times to pick the berries. At the moment, people pick the berries to be used as raw materials in different industries. There is a variety of products that can be used as alternative sources of vitamins and minerals. It has led to decreased tours in the forests in such of the berries by Swedish. Most of the Swedish who pick do it for fun to make their own jam, jelly, soup, pie, and for the pleasure of outdoor activities. At the same time, there are private companies that have realized the value of Swedish berries: they employ workers to pick the berries which are later refined to other products (Bertil 2009).
There are different types of Swedish berries. The most common being the Swedish Blueberry (Curningham 2008). It can be used to make children's favourite jam, eaten along with pancakes. Because of its sweetness, more than often is used for making desserts and cakes. A Lingonberry is another type of Swedish berry commonly used for flavouring meat products and cheesecake. Cloudberry is the most sought-after Swedish berry. When still fresh, it can be used as a cream, vanilla or as a jam with fried camber. Other types of Swedish berries include; Wild Straw Berries, Arctic Bramble and Wild Raspberries. The three are not easily found but are very delicious. Most of the berries grow naturally in the forests, but some of them such as strawberries, raspberries, black currant, red currant, and gooseberries are, sometimes, grown in gardens (Ingegerd 2012).
As said earlier, the Swedish berries flourish during winter, more specifically during July and August. During this time, many people (mostly from Thailand) fly to Sweden to pick the berries. According to Lintner, the summer weather has affected both the yield of wild berries and the economic status of the berry pickers (2009). In the year 2007, the Swedish government began giving temporary work visas to Thais to pick berries. It led to an increase of workers to almost five times in the year 2009. It was beneficial to both Thais and Swedish since jobs that the Swedish had earlier on refused to take were taken by the Thais. The Thais earned a satisfactory amount out of berry picking. It has helped not only to promote trade between the two countries but also created a good rapport between the two countries (Meraab 2009). Most of the Thais leave their home country to tour Sweden. It has also helped in promoting the tourism industry in both countries. The amount gained as a result of berry picking has helped most of the Thais to buy houses and other household needs. It has significantly raised their economic standards. Sometimes, the Thais lack the cash that will enable them to fly to Sweden. As a result, they are forced to apply for loans from the government where they are expected to repay once they are paid after picking the berries. It, sometimes, is more of a gamble since, in some seasons, the weather condition is severe to the extent of destroying the berries. This lowers significantly the amount of cash earned by the Thais. As a result, some of them cannot be able to pay their debts. Furthermore, if the situation is worse, some cannot afford their tickets back to Thailand. It, sometimes, forces the Thai embassy to pay for their tickets. This problem is currently being handled by formulating policies that will force companies to pay their workers irrespective of the total amount of berries picked. Complaints have also emerged where workers are mistreated by being given poor accommodation (Bertil 2009). Other workers from Bulgaria and Asia are also employed by companies to pick berries from the forest.
The harvested berries are put into various uses as discussed above. When picked on a large scale, almost four-fifths of the picked berries are exported (The Economist 2012). The target market is mainly the Canadian economy where the berries are processed to Swedish fish and some other candy products (The Economist 2012). In the US economy, they have banned the importation of Swedish berries into the country.
Based on the findings, it should be noted that the major problem facing Swedish berries is the poor treatment given to those foreigners who tour Sweden to pick berries. As a business person who intends to venture into this industry, I will ensure that the workers are given hospitable reception. Also, accommodation of the temporary workers will be ensured by providing them with suitable places to stay. Only meals of standard quality will be served to the workers during their stay. I hope this will act as an incentive to the workers. From the findings, there is a tendency of private companies to fail to pay workers in case of bad weather hence killing their morale to work. I will solve this by coming up with a policy that will ensure the workers also get paid for the work despite the poor weather. It will, in the long run, establish a good rapport between my company and the workers. It will ensure sustainable labour to pick the berries from the forests.