101 East

Sweden’s Thai Berry Pickers

They travel thousands of kilometres from home to pick berries, but do Thai workers risk exploitation in the forests of Sweden?

Every year, thousands of Thai workers comb Sweden’s forests in search of berries.

It is a job that Swedes will not do, but for the migrant workers, it is a potentially lucrative alternative to toiling in rice paddies at home. Paid by the kilo, they have to hope for a good harvest. They work long, gruelling days during their two-month contracts. But it can take a month or longer to pay off the loans they take out to cover living expenses.

From Thailand to Sweden, 101 East follows the berry pickers crossing the globe to provide for their families.