Child Labour In Food Production

child labour in food production

Child labour is a complex universal problem, which affects boys and girls in most countries of the world.

Child labour refers to work that is harmful to a child’s physical and mental health and well-being. It also refers to work that interferes with the child’s education, leisure and development[1].

Child labour does not refer to children or adolescents who help around the family house or on the family farm outside of school hours or during the school holidays providing the work that they are doing is appropriate to their level of development.

Child Labour and International Law

The international law separates child labour into 3 categories[1][2]:

  1. Unconditional worst forms of child labour: such as slavery, commercial sexual exploitation & the use of children in illicit activities.
  2. Hazardous work, which is to be defined by each country in consultation with workers and employers.
  3. Labour performed under the minimum age as established by law.

Child labour is defined by the International Labour Organization (ILO) who provide with details of minimum ages and the worst forms of child labour conventions. However no person or product certification system can provide 100% guarantee that a product is free of child labour[1].