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"I have worked at the Vreugdenhil laboratory for 34 years, first in Scharsterbrug and now in Gorinchem. Vreugdenhil is a good employer. The work I do is varied and I come everywhere in the company. I can bike to work. Love it!"

Yvonne Beekmeijer - analyst

We have set up various programmes at Vreugdenhil that are focused on improving our employees’ health and fitness. As part of the BRAVO programme, we regularly post messages in various internal channels on topics such as 'exercise, smoking, alcohol, diet, and relaxation.' We also provide fruit at all our sites, among other things, and encourage 'mystery walks', enabling new employees to get to know colleagues who have worked there longer during a lunch walk. 

Bootcamp training
Our weekly boot camp training in Nijkerk brings vitality and enjoyment. We also encourage employees from all sites to participate in a running race in Nijkerk with various short and longer distances, and we organise skating clinics. 

TipTrack tool
Employees who are subject to the collective agreement for the dairy industry again had access to the TipTrack tool last year. In an effort to boost sustainable employability, TipTrack offers training and coaching in four areas: vital, flexible, skilled, and financial insight. Employees can choose for themselves how they want to use the budget that is made available to them. They can also opt to save it for additional leave, or to take more birth leave. At present, there are 300 TipTrack users at Vreugdenhil.

Sickness absence
A major challenge is sickness absence. The year 2022 confronted us with a high sickness absence rate, rising from 5% to 7.4%. 1.0% was off sick for more than one year, while 3.2% was off sick for more than six weeks but less than one year. The national average for the food industry was 6.7% through Q3 of 2022. Statistics Netherlands’ annual figure is expected to rise some more once the figure for Q4 is also known. Unfortunately, however, we failed to achieve our goal of being 1% below the national industry average. There are several reasons for this high sickness absence rate: Corona, flu and employees who had to wait longer for their operation due to the delayed care related to corona. Plus several employees who, unfortunately, proved to be (seriously) ill for a long time. 

Preventive medical examination
At the end of 2022, we organised a PME (preventive medical examination) at Vreugdenhil. This examination consisted of two parts: an extensive questionnaire and physical measurements. The results will be announced in early 2023. Based on these results, we will determine follow-up actions.