Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2803

Article | Open Access

Socio‐Legal Production of the Tourist‐Seasonal Labourer for the Finnish Berry Industry

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Abstract:  The article investigates the phenomenon of precarious labour within the Finnish wild berry industry, focusing on the socio‐legal dimensions that enable short‐term “just‐in‐time” migration, primarily from Thailand, for the berry season. Since the initial 2005 recruitment of Thai citizens to engage in forest berry picking for the Finnish berry industry, the industry has become heavily reliant on migrant labour. At the same time, the pickers’ situation exemplifies a case of unregulated labour, as pickers are categorised as a group outside of labour laws in Finland. By asking how this “non‐work”—berry picking without labour rights—has repeatedly been justified on a policy level, the article provides a case study that unpacks the creation of a racialised migrant labour force through a statecraft of differential inclusion, in an arrangement regarded to advance rural economies. Empirically, the article draws on an analysis of policy documents through which a particular kind of temporary migration corridor is administered.

Keywords:  deregulated labour; differential inclusion; Finland; seasonal migration; unregulated labour; wild berry industry



© Minna Seikkula. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.