As COVID-19 affects almost the entire world, NordGen also revises our policies. For example, we encourage NordGen employees to work from home, if they are able to. All business travels are cancelled and our offices are closed for external meetings. But apart from that, we continue our work with conserving and promoting the sustainable use of genetic resources as normal.
“This type of happenings demand that we act responsibly. It’s important for us to reduce the risk of spreading the infection, out of care of both our personnel and our collaboration partners but also to make sure that the task of maintaining the Nordic seed collection continues. NordGen follows the situation closely and are ready to change our guidelines on short notice if needed” Lise Lykke Steffensen, CEO of NordGen, said.
This time, from the middle of March to the beginning of April, is a very busy time in our greenhouses. During these weeks, we sow a lot of different plant varieties. The fact that we have only a few people with very specific knowledge working here makes us vulnerable. We are aware of this and this is also one of the reasons we’re following the situation so closely. Though, for the time being, everything is as usual and the personnel goes about with their tasks as any other day.
“We’re tending to the material already sown, changing pots, watering, sowing new material and preparing for the summer season. But we have also prepared an emergency plan which will guide our priorities if the situation gets worse and if we for some reason see ourselves with a shortage of staff” said Fredrik Kollberg, Teamleader for the Field Personnel.
The seed laboratory is also conducting their work as any other day, though with a somewhat reduced staff force, due to sick leaves. Anyone showing some kind of symptoms with fever, sore throat or a cold are asked to stay at home for at least 14 days.
“We’re still conducting our work as any other day and sending seeds to those who have placed an order. However, the deliveries might be slightly delayed compared to normal. We hope for your understanding in this” said Johan Axelsson who is responsible for NordGen’s seed laboratory.