Skirt-clad women banned from fruit fields again

A strawberry farm manager has come under fire for banning skirt-wearing women from picking the fruits for “hygienic reasons”.Reinhard Piribauer hit the headlines in 2008 when the rule was introduced for the first time at his “Erdbeerland” self-service picking farms across the province of Lower Austria.Now the businessman faces fresh pressure over his decision not to lift the controversial ban this year around.”I decided to issue this ruling to win back regular customers. Business figures confirm that I was right,” he said today (Thurs).Piribauer said he had been confronted with a wave of complaints before 2008 over some women allegedly going to the toilet while squatting in his fields.The entrepreneur claimed the vast majority of customers backed the restriction.Legal experts said Piribauer did not have to fear consequences since he would only breach equality rules if he banned all women from picking strawberries at his farms regardless of what they were wearing.