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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2012

Social partners cooperation for reduction of musculoskeletal disorders in agriculture

Hermans, Veerle; O'Neill, David; Motmans, Roeland; Lundqvist, Peter; Roman-Liu, Danuta


The European social partners in agriculture recognize the considerable frequency of musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) in the sector which has negative consequences for workers, employers, social security systems and hence for the whole society. They made an agreement in 2005 to tackle this problem and their main interest was finding good practices ‘on the floor’, with the involvement of the farmers and farming industries. A partnership with researchers from 4 different organisations across Europe, was created, taking into account both academic partners and/or partners experienced with the agricultural sector. GEOPA-COPA acted as a network partner with all the EU agriculture organisations. The project partners proposed a methodology how to collect the good practices. In total, 103 company visits were organised and 55 additional reports were collected. More than 140 good practices were defined going from easy, low-cost solutions to highly technological, more expensive solutions. All this information is disseminated via the project website ( and summarised in 6 brochures. This paper focuses on the methodology to set up the ergonomic project with social partners.


agriculture; musculoskeletal disorders; good practices; social partners

Published in

2012, Volume: 41, number: Supplement 1, pages: 5327-5333

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    UKÄ Subject classification

    Environmental Health and Occupational Health
    Agricultural Science

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