Farmers and those involved in food production can now receive rapid asymptomatic workplace testing, Defra has announced.
Food and farming businesses with a minimum of 50 employees can register for government-funded lateral flow tests for asymptomatic workers.
The lateral flow device (LFD) Covid-19 test kits will be available until 31 March 2021, Defra explained.
The free tests allow weekly testing of workers who are unable to work from home.
The government is inviting firms with more than 50 employees to establish asymptomatic testing sites (ATSs) in the workplace.
This will allow both employees and contractors to access LFDs and receive rapid Covid-19 results.
The NFU, which has been pushing for rapid workplace testing for farmers and workers in agriculture, has welcomed the move.
The union's deputy president, Stuart Roberts said: “It has always been important during times of crisis to keep workers safe and our shops and fridges full.
"It’s great that Defra and DHSC [Department of Health and Social Care] have secured this testing for those food businesses, including farmers and growers where they have over 50 employees.
“We will continue to work closely with government on reducing the need for those workers testing negative to self-isolate, and for smaller businesses to access mass testing facilities.”
Food and farming businesses with over 50 employees who want to know more have been told to email firstname.lastname@example.org.